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Falls Council OKs plans for anchor tenants at Portage Crossing

7/11/2013 - West Side Leader
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By Emily Chesnic

The long-term goal of the city of Cuyahoga Falls has been to transform the site of the once dying State Road Shopping Center — currently an empty chunk of land at State Road and Portage Trail — into a flourishing development again.

Now, a new shopping and dining complex, known as Portage Crossing, is coming closer to fruition at the site.

At the July 8 meeting, Cuyahoga Falls City Council approved site plans for the two anchor tenants for Portage Crossing. The tenants are a Giant Eagle grocery store and Cinemark, a 10-screen movie theater.

The plans state Giant Eagle would construct a 92,622-square-foot grocery store, and Cinemark, a 34,562-square-foot theater, as part of the 241,000-square-foot retail development.

Last month, Council approved the plans for the Portage Crossing buildings that would line Portage Trail.

According to city officials, Stark Enterprises, the developer for the Portage Crossing project, would close on the sale of the property July 31.

City officials have said an official groundbreaking for Portage Crossing would take place this fall, and the development would be open for business in fall 2014.

In other city business, it was announced the removal of the Sheraton Mill Dam on the Cuyahoga River again was delayed due to high water. The work was to begin July 9 but heavy rain postponed the work again, city officials said.

According to officials, work will begin this week, as soon as water levels go down. As part of the project, the LeFever Powerhouse Dam will be removed later this summer.

City officials have said the approximate $1 million project was approved by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and will be funded through the state’s Water Pollution Control Loan Fund.

The project is anticipated to restore the river as it was 200 years ago, improving water quality and providing new recreational opportunities, according to city officials.

Also during the meeting, Council introduced legislation that would approve:

  • a conditional zoning certificate for the operation of a vehicle repair facility at 2010 Bailey Road in an MU-2 Neighborhood Center District;
  • the preliminary plat of the Hidden Lakes Phase 3 subdivision;
  • the site plan related to the French Mill Run subdivision plat;
  • the preliminary and final subdivision plat of the French Mill Run subdivision;
  • a contract with Siemens Industry Inc. for the purchase of a distribution feeder automation system for use by the Electric Department;
  • the issuance and sale of $7.6 million principal amount of notes, in anticipation of the issuance of bonds, for the purpose of revitalizing the State Road Redevelopment Area by acquiring, clearing and improving certain properties in that area;
  • applications submitted by financial institutions and designating depositories for the active and interim funds of Cuyahoga Falls for the five-year period beginning Aug. 23 and ending Aug. 22, 2018;
  • a contract with Bell Equipment Co. for the purchase of a used “Epoke” salt spreader for use by the Street Department;
  • a contract with Coastal Steel Management for the purchase of a prefabricated, unassembled metal storage building;
  • an amendment to the Summit County 9-1-1 Plan to include the Southwest Summit Council of Governments as a public safety answering point; and
  • a Community Reinvestment Area Tax Exemption Agreement with French Mill Run LLC.

Also at the regular meeting, Council approved a conditional zoning certificate for the operation of an outdoor bulk storage facility at 4575 State Road in an E-1 Employment District and authorized a contract for the replacement of a water main on Graham Road, from Bath Road to Graham Road Circle.

Council will hold committee meetings July 15 and the last regular meeting before the August recess July 22, both beginning at 6:30 p.m. at the Natatorium, 2345 Fourth St.

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