Steel Mills

Warren Steel Mill Coming Down

Written by Sandy Williams

Attempts to save the Warren steel mill connected with the former RG Steel have finally come to an end.  BDM Warren Steel Operations filed a permit application to demolish the mill that was shut down in May 2012 said Howland Township Administrator Darlene St. George.

The mill was purchased by BDM in August 2012 and the new owners tried unsuccessfully to find a buyer to restart the mill.  Hilco Trading purchased the mill assets in May 2013 with the stipulation to market the mill for three months before razing the facilities. With the deadline past and no potential buyers, the demolition equipment moved in.

The seven buildings of the cold-rolling mill will be torn down and a two-year timeline to demolish the hot mill has been determined.  Dismantling of the cold rolled site began on Thursday.

It is estimated that relining and restarting the blast furnace would have cost any potential buyer $100 million.

History of the Warren, Ohio Steel Mill

The mill began making steel in 1902 as Republic Steel Corporation.  It was then purchased by Jones & Laughlin Steel Company (J&L) which subsequently became LTV Steel. LTV declared bankruptcy in the late 1980’s and the company was reorganized as WCI Steel and was purchased by the Renco Group. WCI filed for bankruptcy in 2002, and the mill was sold to Severstal in 2008. In 2010, Severstal sold the mill to RG Steel (owned by the Renco Group) and in May 2012 the company went bankrupt.  BDM purchased the company out of bankruptcy in August 2012.

According to AIST statistics the Warren steel mill fully integrated steel operations with its one blast furnace and one BOF had the ability to produce 2.04 million tons of steel annually. The mill also had a 56” wide hot strip mill and a 54” wide cold mill. The 300,000 tons per year galvanizing facility had been shuttered for a number of years prior to the final bankruptcy. (History source: Hilco Trading & AIST)

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