Bexley officials are hoping a land purchase will help them redevelop several pieces of property on the city's southwest side, although the redevelopment will not occur immediately.

Bexley officials are hoping a land purchase will help them redevelop several pieces of property on the city's southwest side, although the redevelopment will not occur immediately.

City council unanimously approved legislation Sept. 22 allowing Mayor John Brennan to purchase the property from Larry Schaffer for $22,500. Service director Bill Harvey said it is a fairly small piece of land, well under an acre.

Harvey said the city was interested in the property for two reasons -- it is located next to two other parcels already owned by the city and the city is putting a waterline under the property to tie into waterlines on Mayfield and Ferndale.

"It makes sense to buy it," he said. The property is located at the intersection of Sheridan and Charles, on the west side of Sheridan, Harvey said.

The purchase gives the city access to Charles from city-owned property, so the city can install the new waterline without having to purchase an easement, Brennan said.

"It makes the whole piece viable," he said. Development director Bruce Langner said no one has approached the city about redeveloping the site. The city was approached some time ago about developing senior housing in that area, said Langner, who was unsure when those discussions took place.

"We always thought it would be nice to do an office park down there because of how close you are to Interstate 70," he said.

But there are some houses and apartments located in the area that would need to be razed before the site could be considered for redevelopment, Langner said.

Brennan said if someone showed interest and had a good plan for redeveloping the site, the city might be interested in selling the property to a developer.

"Probably some day down the road 10 to 20 years down the road the site will be valuable to someone who wants to (develop) something down there," Brennan said. "There is nothing wrong with having the land and sitting on it for a few years."

There was discussion at some point about developing a hotel on the property, but the area could not support a hotel, Brennan said.

City officials met about a year ago with a real estate professional who specializes in hotels, and it was determined a hotel would be a better fit for Main Street because of its proximity to Capital University and amenities like restaurants and the Drexel Theatre, Langner said.

Main Street also is more centrally located to potential users of a hotel like Ohio Dominican University, Franklin University, the Veterans Administration hospital and Nationwide Children's Hospital, Langner said.

The city also has considered relocating its service garage from the city's municipal complex, 2242 E. Main St, to the property at Sheridan and Charles.

But it is too early to tell, Langner said, if the space would be more suitable for a service garage or redevelopment. He said it is convenient space if the city needs to move the garage off-site.

"How that would affect other development, I don't know right now," he said.

Schaffer, president of Town Homes Management, thought it was wise for the city to purchase the property while it was available for what he said was a fair price.

"Bexley advised us recently that they would like to pick up the last piece," he said. "It gives them three empty lots side by side behind houses on Sheridan."