City of Waxahachie

The next step to revitalizing the old Baylor hospital campus was taken by the Waxahachie City Council on Monday night with the approval of a contract for inspection, abatement, and demolition of the structure.

The council approved the contract not to exceed $1.45 million and with a contingency of $49,175 with Environmental and Construction Services Inc. and Vantage Environmental Services LP.

Environmental and Construction Services was established in 1991 first working in Houston and later expanding to Austin and the Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex. Services ERC provides include environmental engineering, commercial and residential construction.

Vantage has 25 years of experience working with several national engineering firms. It specializes in asbestos management services, mold testing, consulting services, indoor air quality, and awareness training.

The city council accepted the donation of the former hospital campus from Baylor Scott & White in January 2020. Baylor Scott & White moved from the old campus to its new facility at 2400 N. Interstate Highway 35E in December 2014.

Assistant city manager Tommy Ludwig said the scope of the work includes the demolition of the former hospital (1405 W. Jefferson St.), the hospital helipad, two medical office buildings, and associated parking lot (1404 W. Jefferson St.), the removal and decommissioning of an underground storage tank, and utility separation for the HRT building (1505 W. Jefferson St.). 

“The estimate for demolition and abatement provided at the council retreat (in April) was approximately $1.3 million,” Ludwig said. “However, this was a preliminary figure and did not include costs associated with the decommissioning of the underground storage tank or the removal of the medical office buildings’ parking lot.”

Ludwig said city staff checked the references for the two companies and the proposed scope of services is in line with the detailed cost estimates. The project is estimated to take 90 days to complete.

During the council’s briefing session prior to the meeting, city manager Michael Scott said the former hospital complex poses a liability to public health and safety in its unoccupied state and also costs the city about $12,000 a month to keep electricity to the property.

“There is an opportunity for someone to get hurt,” Scott said. “I think that we have some good suitors (looking at the property) as far as a redevelopment plan goes. We are really optimistic about the redevelopment.”

There had been developers who were interested in redeveloping the existing building but, when they took a survey of the property, found it wasn’t salvageable, he said.

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