The Canal Winchester Times

Canal Winchester sells parcel

HFI plans storage, parking on acquired property

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Canal Winchester City Council gave its unanimous approval earlier this month to legislation authorizing the mayor to convey about 1.7 acres of unused city land to the Canal Winchester Industry and Commerce Corp. so it can be sold to Dennis Enterprise Limited Partnership for $1.

The partnership is an affiliate of HFI Inc. The parcel adjoins the south side of HFI Inc.'s 7.3-acre property at 59 Gender Road.

According to Mayor Michael Ebert, HFI plans to construct a storage building and use part of the land for additional parking.

Canal Winchester expects to get a considerable return on the deal, regardless of the nominal sale price.

Ebert said HFI Inc. will move 50-60 workers from another of its locations once construction is completed.

"Realistically and conservatively, I think this could bring in an additional $30,000 to $35,000 in revenue per year to the city," he said.

Once the sale of the land is completed, Ebert said HFI Inc. will be required to approach the Canal Winchester Planning and Zoning Commission to get approval for its construction plans.

"I have no projections at this time for completion of the building, as they need to go to planning and zoning first, and get the ball rolling there," Ebert said. "Hopefully, they'll get that done before the end of the year and finish construction in 2015."

The land was part of a larger, 7.6-acre parcel the city purchased earlier this year for $90,000; much it, according Development Director Lucas Haire, will be used for parkland.

"We bought this land a few months back and tore down the house that was there," Ebert said. "Now HFI has requested putting a parking lot on it and they'd like to store their chemicals in a separate building outside the plant, which will give them room to bring another 50-60 workers ... and they'll need the additional parking for those employees."

HFI, an auto-parts manufacturer, announced plans in 2011 to move its approximately 225 employees to Canal Winchester and to close its operations in Obetz and Groveport.

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