City approves apartment complex plans

By LOU WILIN
STAFF WRITER

Plans for low-income apartments on the north side of East Melrose Avenue and east of Crystal Glen Apartments were approved Thursday by Findlay City Planning Commission.

The $9-million complex of 12 buildings containing a total of 46 units and a community building, would be built by April 2019. Construction will start in spring 2018.

Crawford Station apartments are being hailed as a start toward fixing Findlay’s housing shortage, which contributes to its worker shortage. The apartments would be a half-mile west of Tall Timbers Industrial Park.

Fifty-six percent of Hancock County’s workforce lives outside Hancock County. That’s not a statistic employers like. Harsh weather can prevent commuters from making it to work, disrupting productivity.

Studies show the government-assisted housing will only scratch the surface of the local housing shortage, said Rod Siddons, chief development officer for Frontier Community Services. The Chillicothe company is developing the housing.

Crawford Station will accommodate about 3 percent of the low-income people who would qualify in a five-mile radius of the site, he said.

The apartments coming in 2019 will have two-, three- and four-bedroom units for those who earn up to 60 percent of the median income in Hancock County. The median income in Hancock County for a family of four, for example, is $66,000. So, a household of four with an income of up to $39,600 could qualify.

All units will be single-story and able to accommodate a washer and dryer. Two-bedroom units will have one bathroom and a one-and-a-half-car garage attached.

Three-bedroom apartments will have two bathrooms and a one-and-a-half-car garage attached. Four-bedroom units will have two bathrooms and a two-car garage attached.

Pets will be allowed, with a likely weight limit of 30 pounds for dogs. Tenants will be charged a deposit and rent for pets, Siddons said.

The complex will have a playground and may have a dog park and area for gardening.
A 2,600-square-foot community building will accommodate birthday parties and other gatherings. It will have an attached shelter house for outdoor picnics, Siddons said.

Separately, the planning commission approved a plan for a used car dealership to move into a long-vacant site of a former convenience store at 1501 W. Main Cross St., west of Interstate 75 and east of Pilgrim Family Restaurant.

“Guaranteed Auto” is due to open in spring of 2018, said owner Brian Greve, of Van Wert.

The front portion of the existing building will be demolished, leaving 3,080 square feet of building space remaining for the dealership.

Wilin: 419-427-8413
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