November 21, 2014

Medina
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Senior facility details revealed in Brunswick

BRUNSWICK — The development company that hopes to buy 16.3 acres of city property at Brunswick Town Center would develop a hotel first, followed by luxury apartments and a senior living facility.

According to a draft of the agreement with Canton-based McKinley Development Co., the city wants the company to develop a hotel first on about 3.7 acres.

The hotel would be eligible for 100 percent property tax abatement on the hotel for 15 years, but it would pay full taxes on the apartment and senior facility.

City Law Director Ken Fisher, who helped negotiate many of the details in the proposed agreement, said the hotel was a priority for City Council members.

“We would really like a hotel in the city. We think it’s a good complement to the city,” Fisher said.

On Monday, Council heard a first reading of an ordinance that would allow the city to enter into the purchase agreement and sell the property for $1,825,000.

The members aren’t scheduled to meet again until late August, but the proposed sale has been discussed in private sessions with Council since late last year.

Bill Lemon, of McKinley Development and its partner firm Lemon and Lemon, said his firms have been looking to buy and develop property in Brunswick for six or seven years.

“It’s one of the last remaining large tracts to develop that’s not residential,” he said. “It has commercial properties already developed and it’s reasonably close to the interchange.”

Lemon said his company and those he has partnered with have developed properties in the Canton area, including the Hilton Garden Inn at the Akron-Canton Airport, and apartments and assisted-living facilities in Cuyahoga Falls and North Canton.

Lemon said if everything goes right, he hopes to move forward on the hotel and assisted-living complexes first.

“We have to do our due diligence studies and put all the facts together on the hotel first and I can’t tell you how long that’s going to take,” he said. Until those studies are done, he can’t say what type of hotel he would bring to Brunswick. Any site plans first would have to be approved by the city’s Planning Commission.

The agreement said the company plans to build between 80 and 100 assisted-living senior housing units and 105 to 114 luxury apartments.

Economic development manager Tim Smith said the development of the three projects is expected to bring about $40 million in construction to the city and spur the development of the Town Center area.

Smith said Brunswick was able to offer tax abatements for a hotel construction that some other cities can’t offer because of the Community Reinvestment District created by Council in 2009.

“They’ll pay property taxes on the other two properties, so they’ll be paying property taxes on about $30 million worth of property. It’s a good deal for everybody.”

Smith said the city also will collect the 1.85 percent municipal income tax for employees from all three phases of the development.

Contact reporter Loren Genson at (330) 721-4063 or lgenson@medina-gazette.com.