ODOT, city close to deal

Published 12:00 am Friday, February 14, 2003

The Ironton Commerce Center should officially have its first tenant signed on in a few days.

Ironton City Council adopted an ordinance Thursday authorizing the transaction, and Mayor Bob Cleary has signed the contract that will sell 8.6 acres in the industrial park to the Ohio Department of Transportation for $258,000.

ODOT will build new facilities and move their Lawrence County operation from its 3001 S. Sixth St. location. Still tentatively named the Ironton Commerce Center, the 40-acre site that was the former home to Allied Signal and Honeywell, is located at 3330 S. Third St.

Email newsletter signup

"It has taken so many years to get to this point," Cleary said. "Now that we have sold the first location it will be exciting for the whole community because they will see some growth."

The agreement will be mailed today, and once ODOT signs the deal will be completed. The city plans to meet with ODOT soon to discuss constructing the Commerce Drive roadway that will connect Lorain and Third streets, he said.

Once an area starts to grow it encourages other businesses to look at the opportunities, and they have talked with several people who have shown interest in the park, he said.

Kathleen Fuller, public information officer for ODOT, District 9, said the department is excited about moving into the industrial park.

"The new facility will mean a more efficient base of operations for our team at the Lawrence County Highway Maintenance Facility," she said. "From the office to the garage, our current facility is somewhat outdated and a modern facility will benefit the staff in their day-to-day operations as enhanced technology and more equipment has been brought to county's operations in recent years."

No timetable for the project has been set but it should be completed in 2004, she said.

After being in the works for more than three years, the city purchased the $375,000 site last year. A brand new, 5,000 square-foot aluminum spec building was already on the property and will be used to market it to future tenant because ODOT will build its own facility.