A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Almost done: Former bank filled and compacted

Written May 31st, 2023 by Hasso Hering

The former Wells Fargo site on Wednesday evening with the “robot” compactor at rest.

No, the little yellow machine they used to compact the fill at the former Wells Fargo lot in downtown Albany is not actually a robot even though it looks like it functions on its own.

It’s remote-controlled, though, so no one has to hold on to the machine while it thumps the fill material, which looks like gravel and dirt, until it qualifies as “terra firma.”

Someone called my attention to this machine Wednesday, and by the time I got around to visiting the site at 300 W. First Ave. it was almost after hours and the work was done.

Not completely done, though, a man in a hard hat told me. He had hoped to be done Wednesday but in fact had one more day of work to finish the job.

Seeing this former bank lot so level and full of fill made me wonder about something:

The Albany Revitalization Agency hopes to sell the site to someone to construct a new building. What if the new building needs a basement? Won’t they have to excavate all the compacted fill that Laneco, the demolition contractor, has just spent a couple of weeks putting in?

The city contract did require that the hole left by the demolition be filled and made level with the surrounding ground. Maybe they figured it would be hard to sell as a great big hole in the ground.

And if the property doesn’t sell, well, then having it filled and level will make it easier to convert to a parking lot. Right? (hh)

10 responses to “Almost done: Former bank filled and compacted”

  1. Dani says:

    I agree with you Hasso on your statement. Easy to convert to parking lot. Did they ever find the time capsule thought to of been buried in it?

    • Hasso Hering says:

      No, they now surmise that the time capsule was removed years ago, possibly when the building was heavily remodeled in the 1970s. Thanks for asking.

  2. Hartman says:

    After careful examination of Hasso’s coverage on this issue, one is forced to consider whether or not the Time Capsule controversy is some sort of massive cover-up by the powers that be. Just asking questions…but it seems that the exhaustive search carried out by various unnamed sources has come-up empty handed. This result should concern every resident of Albany.

    What may have been uncovered in the capsule could prove damning which might explain why it was never “found.” We should insist the Council fund a thorough investigation into this matter, even if it requires more bonding authority. Until we have all the answers, many questions remain.

    • MarK says:

      Probably wasn’t found because it contained Biden & Son documents.

      • Bayushi says:

        It probably had the Epstein client list.

      • Hartman says:

        If this is true, the documents must be handed over immediately to Rep. Jim Comer. His claim to fame is that he “lost” an “informant.” Perhaps the finding of Biden Crime Family materials in the Bank Building time capsule will lead to Biden’s impeachment. Thanks to the Commenter who was thoughtful enough to create this gem of analysis.

    • Anony Mouse says:

      Your parodic comment about a Council “…bonding authority…” make me laugh out loud.

      My second thought – the council wouldn’t be stupid enough to do that, right?

      Given the recent ‘non-partisan’ political grandstanding of four councilors on the “flag” issue, who knows.

      Sometimes this Council’s behavior is beyond parody.

  3. Bob Woods says:

    Leaving an open hole is an invitation to some knucklehead falling into it, injuring themselves, and suing the City for $50 million or more.


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