Ohio Brownfield Remediation Program
Ohio Brownfield Remediation Program

LIMA — The long-ago abandoned Allen County Home will be demolished and the land cleared for redevelopment thanks to the Ohio Brownfield Remediation Program.

Lydia Mihalik, Director of the Ohio Department of Development, made a stop in the area this week to announce projects awarded in the first round of funding through the $350 million statewide program. In all, 78 projects, including approximately $54.8 million for 37 clean-up and $5.5 million for 41 assessment projects were announced for 35 counties across the state.

Allen County received two grants: $710,000 to remediate the site of the former county home at 3125 Ada Road, and $200,000 to complete environmental studies on a 57-acre site at 1403 Neubrecht Road, on which a creosote facility operated from 1938-1972.

“We’re very excited about the future of these sites,” Mihalik said to a group of county and township leaders Tuesday morning. “These grants will have a positive impact in our communities, helping them remove blighted properties and prepare sites for redevelopment.”

Allen County owns the 8-acre parcel. The 62,000 square foot structure was built in 1959 as the Allen County Home to serve the indigent until 1993. It was then leased to a private health care facility and at one time was available as housing for students attending The Ohio State University branch campus. The site abuts about 70 acres of farmland also owned by the county. Possible development ideas for the site include housing or possible commercial or industrial projects.

Brad Baxter, Bath Township Trustee, said new housing is a need in the region.

“We see housing as being as important as business development,” Baxter said.

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Governor Jon Husted also traveled throughout the state Tuesday announcing awards in various counties. The Ohio Brownfield Remediation Program was created with support from the Ohio General Assembly in the current operating budget. Tuesday’s awards are the first group of funds from Round 1, with another group to be announced in the near future.

Funding for the program is first come, first served with a $1 million set-aside for each county. The program is part of Governor DeWine’s Ohio BUILDS Initiative, which focuses on supporting targeted solutions that impact quality of life, such as water infrastructure improvements, broadband expansion, brownfield redevelopment, the demolition of blighted buildings, and more.

About AEDG: The Allen Economic Development Group is a public/private partnership that was formed in 1993 as a facilitator for countywide economic development. Its mission is to create an environment for new business development, promote and nurture existing business and facilitate the creation of new jobs in Allen County.