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But it is not only time consuming to decommission mills and tear them down; environmental hazards can linger.
For example, the Port of Ridgefield spent years reclaiming 41 acres of riverfront property from the contamination of an old wood-processing plant.
Those properties could eventually be available for the first time since 1883.
Mayor Scott Higgins said the mill’s future has been fodder for conversation for years, but most energy now is going to be spent on dealing with the loss of jobs.
But he said those properties’ futures will come up sooner or later.
“It’s kind of a crystal ball question,” Higgins said.
“Some say ‘Camas, Wa.,’ on them and people were excited about that.” Likewise, Melissa Mc Cusker made sure she had old parts of the mill as decor when she opened Feast 316 two years ago.
“A lot of people bought them because they came from the mill,” said Clark Crawford, supervisor of the store.
JB Homes currently has new homes and new home builder sites located in the greater Vancouver, WA area and Camas, WA area.
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CAMAS — It was only a generation ago that life in Camas seemed to revolve around its paper mill.