Delaware officials hope a proposed annexation could lead to the expansion of the city's industrial park and hasten the further extension of Sawmill Parkway.
Delaware City Council in late January unanimously passed a resolution indicating what services the city would provide to about 90 acres at 2781 Airport Road in Delaware Township. The resolution marks an initial step in the annexation process, which requires additional approvals from the city and Delaware County. The 90-acre farm site sits just east of Trucco Construction and just west of multiple industrial and manufacturing firms off Innovation Court. Francis and Mary Lou Wilgus own the property, according to Delaware County auditor's records.
David Efland, the city's director of planning and community development, said he anticipates the owners will seek to rezone the property to prepare it for use by industrial or manufacturing firms.
"That's consistent with our comprehensive plan," he said.
City Manager Tom Homan said the annexation could lead to benefits for residents throughout Delaware.
"This is just another opportunity to expand the city's economic base," he said. "There aren't going to be residential rooftops there. There are going to be businesses there, and that's what we want."
Homan said while the development of the property likely would expand the city's industrial park, it also could lead to the extension of Sawmill Parkway.
Delaware County in 2016 completed a 4.5-mile extension of the roadway from Hyatts Road in Liberty Township to just northwest of U.S. Route 42 in Delaware's industrial park. While plans for the project initially called for Sawmill Parkway to extend even farther northwest to South Section Line Road, the agreement struck by the city and county on the effort did not fund the construction of that stretch.
Homan said when looking at the annexation proposal, "you can't help but notice, obviously, (the extension of Sawmill Parkway) would go along that property frontage there.
"Hopefully, over time, with the development of that property, we might see, perhaps, the extension of that parkway" toward Section Line Road, he said.
Homan said the resolution of services represented the first step "in a fairly lengthy process" of annexation and development of the property.