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Ford plant tear-down begins Monday

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Demolition of the old 67-acre Ford plant along the Mississippi River in St. Paul will begin next week, the Pioneer Press reports.

The site, which spans 122 acres, won't likely be ready for sale until 2018, largely because of the lengthy environmental cleanup process.

Ford is expected to begin marketing the site in 2015 when the tear-down is expected to be complete, the newspaper said.

A fixture in the city for 86 years, the assembly plant shut down on Dec. 19, 2011 after the Ford Ranger truck was phased out.

KARE 11 reports city officials and state lawmakers lobbied Ford Motor Company to retrofit the plant to build new models, but the company declined.

St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman has said there are many opportunities for redeveloping the prime real estate.

The city's goal is to create a mixed-use site that utilizes sustainable and urban design, reduces traffic impacts, encourages walking, biking and transit, and provides connections to the community and the Mississippi River valley, KARE says.

Many developers have already expressed interest in the property.

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Demo of St. Paul's Ford plant could start in May

However, the Pioneer Press reports Ford officials still need to apply for demo permits from the city. A company spokeswoman claims the Ford Site Planning Task Force is on schedule to bring down the 86-year-old assembly plant in Highland Park.