Whitehall News

Oasis building coming down at tech park

Fall razing slated as redevelopment of rebranded commerce center begins

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Demolition of a portion of the former Oasis Corp. plant on Poth Road is expected to occur in October, Whitehall Development Director Zach Woodruff said, making way for the development of 35 acres at the Airport South Commerce and Tech Park.

Whitehall and three central Ohio firms are cooperating in the development, the first major redevelopment at the 350-acre Tech Park the city began marketing earlier this year.

Whitehall City Council members, at their Aug. 5 meeting, unanimously approved an ordinance establishing an urban development tax-increment financing district, or TIF, for the 35-acre parcel.

The ordinance authorized Mayor Kim Maggard to accept ownership of the parcel but immediately transfer it to the previous owner, California-based Marcus Adams Properties.

In order to establish an urban development TIF, the municipality creating it must appear in the chain of the property title, Woodruff said.

The Whitehall Community Improvement Corp. is in contract to purchase a 35-acre parcel from Marcus Adams Properties, owner of the parcel last occupied about 10 years ago by the Oasis Corp., a water cooler and fountain manufacturer.

The CIC is expected to close on the purchase by the end of September, Woodruff said, and in turn sell 30 acres to a new partnership and 5 acres to Byers Auto, which already has a 5-acre dealership at the Tech Park.

The Mark F. Taggart Co. and Fed One Dublin formed a new limited-liability company to share in the development of the 30-acre parcel it will acquire from Whitehall, Woodruff said.

The first phase will include the construction of a 140,000-square-foot "spec building" for manufacturing and distribution use; the second phase is planned as a 225,000-square foot warehouse or distribution center; and a third building will be a 10,000-square-foot medical office, company President Mark Taggart told ThisWeek Whitehall News in June.

Glazer Distributors leases two of the buildings Oasis once occupied, but a third unoccupied structure will be demolished.

"We expect demolition will begin as soon as possible after closing," Woodruff said.

The demolition will create access to a large expanse of land that did not egress when Oasis occupied the site, Woodruff said.

The 25-year urban development TIF, valued around $1.2 million, will reimburse developers for expenses associated with the demolition, right-of-way acquisition, utility relocation and related on-site improvements, Woodruff said.

Woodruff estimates the city will collect about $875,000 in new income-tax revenue during the first 10 years of the initial phase of development.

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