Billerud to sell Wisconsin Rapids paper mill assets; City eyes reuse plans

Billerud to sell Wisconsin Rapids paper mill assets; City eyes reuse plans

WISCONSIN RAPIDS (excerpts from Wisconsin Rapids Tribune) – The idled portions of the Wisconsin Rapids mill will be sold.

At a Planning Commission and Common Council meeting both groups voted to adopt a Wisconsin Rapids Recovery and Reuse Plan developed by Vandewalle & Associates and place it on file in the event it could be used to work with future property owners.

To create that plan, the city worked with Vandewalle & Associates to research and identify five opportunities for the paper mill property. Those opportunities included: focusing on producing fiber-based products as a renewable packaging option, building an industrial and logistics park, creating a renewable energy park, expanding pulpwood manufacturing and focusing on the agricultural industry.

The Vandewalle report broke the property into five districts that each offer their own challenges and opportunities like rail access, building conditions, floodplains and cost to repair existing infrastructure. That report included industrial reuse and infill; biomass processing; logistics and renewable energy; wastewater treatment plant; and residential districts.

Kearns said that reuse plan serves as a resource for any potential developers who might want more information about the land and potential opportunities at the site. While specific opportunities have been identified, the city and developers aren’t limited to these options.

Billerud will keep and continue to operate its converting facility in Wisconsin Rapids and the 130 employees at that site and will sell the idled mill and related assets to Capital Recovery Group, the company said in a news release.