by Victor Lopez
ODESSA--More than a year after it was announced Flint Hills Resources in Odessa would shut it's doors, NewsWest Nine has learned the plant on the south side of Odessa, will soon be demolished.
A letter with that decision made it's way to Mayor Larry Melton, earlier this week. This, after a recent city council meeting where the future the plant was discussed.
The letter starts off by saying how they (Flint Hills) value and appreciate the working relationship they have with the City of Odessa, but that's where the two stop seeing eye to eye.
Flint Hills Managing Director of Business Development says, "We are not inclined to believe it will be a petrochemical site in the future. Faced with the ongoing and undeniable chemical industry downturn, we believe there are no credible opportunities that would allow this plant to be sold and re-started."
Flint Hills officials say it would be of mutual interest for them and the City of Odessa to move forward to other available options, specifically, tearing it down.
Mayor Larry Melton says, while there would be sentimental side effects from seeing the plant go, there would really be no other significant side effects. The damage from closing the plant has already been done.
"Economically, we've already taken our hit. Jobs have been eliminated. The infrastructure is being taken out as we speak, so I don't think, economically, it's going to hurt us. It would have helped us, could we have gotten the additional 325 jobs back, but those jobs have already gone away, so we shouldn't see any further deterioration because of it," Melton said.
While he has not visited the site personally, Melton says he's heard that some actual demolition and clean out work has already started. Once the existing plant is gone, it will be up to Flint Hills to decide what to do with all the empty space, since they own the land as well.