Projects

City receives funding for alley enhancement

Local foundations award $70,000 to pedestrian project

AlleyProject-nolightsonpoles

Conceptual drawing, subject to change.

TIFFIN, OHIO – November 20, 2017 – Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz announced at a Tiffin City Council meeting tonight that the city has secured funding to move forward with a pedestrian alley enhancement project in downtown Tiffin.

The city received two grants, $40,087 from the Meshech Frost Charitable Trust and $30,000 from the National Machinery Foundation, which will cover nearly all costs associated with the project.

“Thanks to the support of our local charitable foundations, we are able to move forward with a project that will transform one of the most used alleys in our downtown into a beautiful, inviting, pedestrian-friendly walkway,” Montz said. “The project will create a safe, well-lit connection between parking and downtown amenities, for both residents and visitors.”

The alley to be enhanced is located across from the Ritz Theatre between City Parking Lot #3 and South Washington Street, adjacent to 33 and 45 South Washington Street. The alley will be closed to vehicular traffic, with removable bollards to allow utility vehicle access.

Improvements will include installation of six decorative poles to support overhead string lighting running the length of the alley, a decorative stamped asphalt surface, and benches, trash cans, planters, and bike racks. Detailed design items will be finalized this winter and construction beginning as early as this winter or early spring, with a target completion date before September 2018. Gas and electric utility work has already been completed.

The Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp.’s Downtown Design Committee chose the project from the Downtown Tiffin Strategic Growth & Development Plan, adopted by council in 2016, and has been working closely with the City Engineer’s department to plan and fund the project. The plan pinpoints several alleys for enhancement, which will be considered upon completion of the current project.

$2.3M investment announced at Tiffin Mall

googoo2World’s largest car wash company to locate new facility

TIFFIN, OHIO – September 22, 2017 – Developers have announced intentions to build a Goo Goo 3 Minute Express Wash car wash franchise on an outlot of the Tiffin Mall property. The real estate purchase, construction and equipment costs represent a $2.3 million investment and the creation of up to 15 new jobs.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz says the project is just the first in a series of development initiatives being planned for the site. “It is exciting to see development moving forward in our West Market Street commercial corridor,” he said. “These large-scale projects take time to plan and bring to fruition; this is the first step of many to come for the mall site.”

Started in 1945 in Anniston, Alabama, Goo Goo Car Wash is an express car wash company headquartered in Columbus, Georgia with 39 outlets in five states. The company, in turn, is owned by private British IMO Car Wash Group, the largest car wash company in the world. IMO operates a network of 800 sites across 12 European countries and Australia, washing over 30 million cars every year.

The Goo Goo car wash is the first project announced for the property since the Tiffin Mall was purchased by Toledo-based Key Hotel and Property Management (KHPM) last September. KHPM continues to negotiate development opportunities for the property.

About SIEDC
Started in 1983, the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.senecasuccess.com.

Investors purchase retail center

Building to house new yoga studio business

napoliTIFFIN, OHIO – September 13, 2017 – Investors have purchased the four-unit commercial building at 378-384 W. Market St. with plans to locate a yoga studio, Yoga Chuck Health & Wellness Studio, in one of the units. The projected opening date for the studio is in January of 2018.

Yoga instructor Chuck Burmeister plans to open Yoga Chuck Health & Wellness Studio early next year. “I have been teaching yoga in various settings since 2009, so I am excited to have my own dedicated space, and bring additional services to my clients,” he said.

Burmeister is a registered yoga and therapeutic yoga teacher, an Urban Zen Integrative Therapy practitioner and a Reiki Master. He will also offer treatments using a vibrating Power Plate and BioMat combination, neither of which is currently available in the Tiffin market.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz is pleased to another entrepreneur making an investment and opening a storefront for their business. “It is great to see another underused building being renovated, and a small business owner finding a space to practice health and wellness in Tiffin.”

The building has three additional units. One is occupied by Napoli Pizza, and the other two are available for lease. The available units are 1,400 and 1,700 square feet, respectively. The investors will be making improvements to the building over the coming months.

About Chuck Burmeister
Chuck Burmeister, affectionately known as Yoga Chuck, began practicing yoga in 2005 to relieve his Multiple Sclerosis (MS) symptoms. He began teaching others in 2009 and has been active at the Tiffin Developmental Center, Tiffin Community YMCA, the Allen Eiry Center, Seneca Co Employees, and various local assisted living and nursing home facilities. He currently offers private Yoga lessons, UZIT Treatments, Reiki Treatments and Raindrop Treatments, and speaks about his MS story, all things related to Yoga, and more. He also has three instructional DVDs for seniors and those with MS, available on Amazon.

About SIEDC
Started in 1983, the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.senecasuccess.com.

American Fine Sinter to make $20M investment

Major expansion to create 25 new jobs

AFS 2017TIFFIN, OHIO – August 22, 2017 American Fine Sinter (AFS) announced today that it will be moving forward with the addition of two production lines at its North American headquarters in Tiffin, Ohio, investing $20 million in equipment and creating 25 new jobs. Tennessee was also a possible site.

AFS President Masayuki Yamamoto attributed the company’s continued growth to its customers, employees and the community: “Our business base is expanding, and we are thankful to have dedicated employees and the backing of the Tiffin community, which allow us to continue to advance.”

This company’s last expansion was announced in 2014, when the company invested $25 million and committed to add 24 new jobs. Since then, they have added 106 jobs and now have 246 employees. This project will fill the remaining space in that expansion with equipment to produce mid and high torque carriers for the Toyota Highlander, RAV4, and Camry, using new technology developed by Toyota. The Tiffin plant is one of three worldwide to use the process.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz applauded AFS’s commitment to the community: “AFS has been a great employer for Tiffin for the past 16 years, and it is wonderful that they continue to choose to invest and grow here.”

With the previous expansion, real property tax exemptions played a significant role due to the cost of building construction. With this expansion, workforce has been the focus, as the company continues to hire at a rapid rate. Initiatives like the Seneca County Workforce Development Strategic Plan, Manufacturing Showcase, and the Student Job Fair are important for long-term success and have helped make the company comfortable with growing here.

About American Fine Sinter
American Fine Sinter (AFS) was established in 2001 in Tiffin, Ohio and started production in 2003. Today, Fine Sinter Co. a joint venture between Tokyo Sintered Metals (TSM) and Japan Powder Metallurgy (JPM), the parent company of AFS, is a $350 million company with more than 1,000 employees worldwide. The company manufactures parts for the automotive, railroad, industrial machinery, and hydraulics industries, and American Fine Sinter most recently has focused on valve seats and variable cam units for the automotive industry.

About SIEDC
Started in 1983, the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.senecasuccess.com.

City Council dedicates new roads

$1M investment provides access to development site

Fair Lane Progress Parkway

TIFFIN, OHIO – August 21, 2017 – Tiffin City Council approved Monday night the dedication of two new roads to provide access to a 60-acre future development site located along U.S 224 between South Shaffer Park Drive and Township Road 18. The roads are part of a larger project intended to span the site.

224Fair Lane will enter the site as a continuation of TR 18, contingent upon the Ohio Department of Transportation’s (ODOT) approval of shifting the access point created by an abandoned railroad bed. The second road, to be called Progress Parkway, will extend to the west from the end of Fair Lane, and eventually be expanded to connect to West Market Street.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz “This is a huge step forward in preparing this site for future development,” he said.

The project is part of an overall improvement to the road infrastructure for the 60-acre site. The two new roads represent a $1 million investment, in conjunction with the nearly $1 million improvements to U.S. 224 announced last month.  The Seneca County Transportation Improvement District committee won a $220,000 grant for SR 224, and continues to identify grant opportunities to offset costs in road improvements county-wide.

About SIEDC
Started in 1983, the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.senecasuccess.com.

Local investors announce OCECO acquisition and expansion

20170807_113105

President & CEO Mike Ruhe and Manufacturing & Marketing Manager Keith Ricker

Total investment to exceed $2.5 million

TIFFIN, OHIO – August 10, 2017 – Investors announced this week the purchase of OCECO Inc., located in the Airport Industrial Park in Tiffin, as well as plans to expand the business. The new owners have purchased the business, and are in the process to purchase the real estate, as well as invest in new equipment. They also plan on adding six new employees to the existing workforce.

President and CEO Mike Ruhe sees room for growth in the business: “We have identified opportunities to expand sales, and we are very impressed with the employees; they know we need to grow and they are ready.”

Founded in 1921, OCECO is a fabricator of high quality safety equipment for flammable liquid storage and wastewater gas disposal systems. They supply airports and energy companies like Marathon and Exxon Mobile and also do a large amount of business with municipalities, food production, and factory farms. Key products include fittings, flame arrestors and gas purification systems. They operate out of a 38,000 square foot facility in the Airport Industrial Park and have nine employees.

Seneca County Commission President Mike Kerschner is pleased to see the company grow: “OCECO has been a presence in the community for many years. It’s great to see new investment breathing new life into an existing company.”

The purchase of OCECO has been in development for more than a year, and the new owners are working with several banks, SIEDC, and other partners to obtain funding and receive assistance with export promotion and energy efficiency incentives. Previous owner Dick Borer, who purchased the company from Pettibone, worked diligently in finding new leadership to keep the business in Tiffin, and will be assisting with the transition.

About OCECO
OCECO – originally an abbreviation of Oil Conservation Engineering Company – was started in Cleveland, Ohio in 1921, and was the first supplier of a complete line of venting and tank fitting equipment.

About SIEDC
Started in 1983, the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.senecasuccess.com.

Tiffin and Seneca County win $220,000 for road improvement

20170629_151509.jpgGrant supports $1M commercial access project

TIFFIN, OHIO – July 5, 2017 – The City of Tiffin has been granted $220,000 through the Ohio Department of Transportation Jobs and Commerce for an improvement project on US 224; a 25 percent match with the city for a project totaling $1 million. It will provide access to a 60-acre site for potential commercial development annexed by the city earlier this year.

The grant is the first received by the Seneca County Transportation Improvement District (TID) created by Seneca County Commissioners in September 2015. “The district was put in place with the future of the county in mind,” Commissioner Shayne Thomas, head of the county’s transportation sub-committee, said. “This project is the first of many for which we plan to secure TID funding.”

Last year, Tiffin, Fostoria and Seneca County representatives collaborated to update and reprioritize the county’s Transportation Improvement Plan. Originally created in 2001, the plan was revised with a clear focus on key projects throughout the county. The revision was approved by all groups, as well as the TID Committee, composed of engineers, elected officials, and economic development organizations from each jurisdiction.

Charlene Watkins, Executive Director of Seneca Regional Planning Commission Executive Director commended the partnership between Seneca County organizations in securing the grant. “The foundation is in place and all parties are working to implement the plan,” she said. “We appreciate SIEDC’s work with different entities to gather information and submit the application, as well as the involvement of State Representative Bill Reineke and State Senator Dave Burke, and everyone else who had a hand in the process.”

About SIEDC
Started in 1983, the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.senecasuccess.com.

Tiffin awarded $1.6M grant for streetscape project

City of Tiffin LogoMiami Street improvements slated for 2018

TIFFIN, OHIO – July 3, 2017 – The City of Tiffin has received funding for the reconstruction of Miami Street through the Ohio Department of Transportation Small Cities Program, up to $1,636,850, which covers 95% of the $1,723,000 streetscaping project.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz is looking forward to beginning the project. “This is a long overdue project that will increase the safety of the road as well as beautify the area,” he said. “The City of Tiffin continues to apply for grants like the Small Cities Program to continue improving our infrastructure while easing the burden on taxpayers.”

The proposed work consists of road reconstruction, new curbs, sidewalks, and lighting, over an approximate length of 2000 feet on Miami Street, from Nelson Street to just east of Clay Street, where the previous project terminated.

This will be a cooperative project with Tiffin University, which will be paying a proportionate share of the local contribution, and covering the costs of non-grant covered items that are of an aesthetic nature, which primarily consist of decorative lighting and textured crosswalks.

“We are excited to partner with the city on this project,” Tiffin University President Lilian Schumacher said. “The continuation of the streetscape enhances our campus and improves walkability of the area for our students.”

Design is expected to conclude early in 2018, with contract award to take place by June of the same year. This schedule may be extended if problems are encountered in the design phase.

Ironwood Steak House to open in June

IronwoodA new restaurant, called the Ironwood Steak House featuring the Black Birch Bar, is planning to open in mid-June. The restaurant combines atmosphere and high-quality cuisine to provide an upscale dining experience in a comfortable setting. Located at the private Mohawk Golf and Country Club, the Ironwood is open to the public.

The menu is still being finalized but will feature traditional steakhouse fare and limited-time specials. The remodeled kitchen also boasts a broiler to quick-sear steak with infrared heat – technology used in many high-quality steak establishments. Local Chef Jimmy Jones, with more than 20 years in restaurant experience, will be heading the kitchen.

The dining room overlooks the golf course, providing beautiful views of the green through a wall of windows. There is also a private dining area that can be closed off for private events, and limited outdoor accommodations. Together, they seat roughly 140, with an area that could be used for small entertainment. Additionally, patrons can enjoy the Black Birch Bar, a full-service bar with a lounge area, located at the entrance of the establishment.

The Ironwood is the product of a partnership of more than 40 investors looking to bring a high-end steakhouse to Seneca County. The restaurant has been in the works for quite some time, with investors split into committees for everything from marketing to personnel, to get to the finished product.

At opening, the Ironwood will serve dinner Wednesday-Saturday, 5-10 p.m. Reservations can be made using OpenTable. Outside events can also book the Ironwood Catering Service.

A sneak peek at renovations:

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ABR approves two Façade Enhancement Grants

Projects total nearly $80,000 in downtown investment

20170321_131351TIFFIN, OHIO – April 4, 2017 – Today, the Architectural Board of Review (ABR) approved two Façade Enhancement Grants for downtown building improvements. The projects were awarded a combined total of $20,000, for a total reinvestment in downtown Tiffin of $78,000, leaving $23,000 available of the $100,000 set aside by the City of Tiffin for 2017.

The largest project is the façade of 130 S. Washington St. (the former Sports Cuts building), which will be restored to its 1941 look. Work will include removing the brick work added in 1979 and rebuilding the 1941 storefront, including front windows. Second and third floor windows will also be replaced. The total project cost is estimated at $46,000.

In the same block, 144 S. Washington St. (the Bookmyer building), will be receiving a $32,000 update. The aluminum facing on the front of the building will be removed and the previous look of the building will be restored, including the original concrete columns and storefront windows.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz is pleased to see so many building owners downtown planning restoration projects. “The atmosphere of improvement downtown is contagious,” he said. “The Façade Enhancement Program is helping us transform the downtown.”

Last month, 135 S. Washington St. (Cabin Creations) received a $6,800 grant for a $13,600 roof and chimney repair project, bringing the remaining total of funds for 2017 to $23,000.

About the Façade Enhancement Program
This City of Tiffin reimbursement grant program was started in 2014 and provides a 50 percent match of funds for eligible exterior improvements on residential and commercial structures within the downtown historic district, up to $10,000. Each building is eligible to receive up to $10,000 per calendar year.  For more information, visit www.senecasuccess.com  (search “Façade Enhancement”).

About SIEDC
Started in 1983, the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.senecasuccess.com.