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Proposed senior developments a positive for Tallmadge

by Holly Schoenstein | reporter Published: January 13, 2013 12:00 AM

Tallmadge -- City officials are reviewing two development projects similar in some respects but also very different.

One proposes to build a senior apartment facility on Colony Park Drive, while the other plans to create senior apartments as part of a larger town center complex on North Avenue near the Circle.

To make the projects financially feasible, the developers of each are applying for federal senior tax credits. Tallmadge's Economic Development Director Dennis Loughry called the program "competitive."

"If we're lucky, we'll get one of the projects, but everyone's telling us we won't get both," he said.

But even if the city only lands one of the projects, he said the local economy will benefit.

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City officials and those involved with the proposed projects explained that senior citizens on fixed incomes tend not to have a lot of extra cash to maintain their single-family homes. Some may even tend to vote against school levies because they feel they won't be able to afford more taxes.

They said when some seniors sell their homes and move into apartments, they tend to choose facilities about a mile from their previous residences.

These seniors stay in the community as consumers and free up their homes for younger, higher-income families that may have children in the local school district, officials explained. Those families may be more apt to maintain the properties and vote for school levies.

Although Loughry said he supports both proposed projects, from an economic development perspective, he said Testa Companies' town center idea would benefit the city more because it has "much more opportunity."

Regardless, he said the amount of interest developers are showing in the city is a positive.

"I think it's good. We have a lot of activity going on in the city," he said.

Email: hschoenstein@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9428

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