My buddy and I had driven past this great barn of an abandoned plant several times before we decided to figure out what it had been (asking someone is no fun). So, we stopped and walked in. I quickly learned from an old safety inspection certificate on a wall that this had been a Louisiana Pacific plant with headquarters in Portland OR (it’s now headquartered in Nashville). Not knowing at the time what took place at the plant, we were perplexed at the great size of the building, the water pits inside and a railroad siding that, on Google Earth, shows train cars loaded with logs lined up outside.
Here’s what I found out: the plant was built in 1986 to make plywood and pressed wood products for the building industry. For some reason (I found the official news release from the company, which stated oversupply of product in the marketplace and outdated equipment at the facility as the reasons), it closed down completely in 1996.
The water pits were used to soak logs before they were processed. The plant was big because they, basically, worked with trees. I don’t know what happened to the rail cars of logs. The plant was already closed when the satellite shot was taken, so I suppose someone finally came and hauled them off.