NEW PHILADELPHIA Dover, Oh

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The Village of Strasburg has been awarded a Clean Ohio grant to demolish a vacant property on North Wooster Avenue. (Tusco TV file photo)

Strasburg, Ohio - Village officials are preparing to transform a downtown eyesore into a public green space.

Solicitor Attorney Richard Fox says the village was recently approved for Clean Ohio grant funding to cover roughly three-quarters of the cost to acquire and demolish a run-down building on North Wooster Avenue that was the former home of Marburger’s Grill.

“This is a situation where this building was a hazard to the community in several ways. What really prompted the process was concerns and violations written by our local fire department and then ultimately the state fire marshal,” he says.  

Fox says the village already has an agreement with owner Wesley Tolle to purchase the property. He says they’ll now begin the process of taking ownership. 

“We have received authorization to proceed with obtaining title to the property, which will be accomplished by me preparing a deed, sending it to Mr. Tolle’s attorney, having it signed and then recorded,” he says. “That will put the property into the village’s name.”

Fox says once that process has been completed, they will then seek authorization to prepare the specs for the demolition. 

“I’m meeting this afternoon with Village Engineer Don Dummermuth to get a jump on that process by discussing with Mr. Dummermuth his drafting of conditions or terms or methods of demolition of the building, what things bidders would have to comply with, how it would have to be demolished, traffic control and all those things related to that,” he says.

Fox says council will approve the final plan before the project goes out for bidding. After that, they’ll award a contract and seek permission to move forward with the demolition. He says the property will ultimately be converted into a community park. 

“It’s going to be somewhat of a downtown mini-park. We may put maybe a gazebo or picnic benches or something of that nature, but it’s not allowed to be used for any other purpose other than green space,” he says.

The project is expected to cost just over $174,000 with a local share of around $45,000. Fox says they’re hoping to have the building demolished before the end of 2019. 

STACEY CARMANY, TUSCO TV


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