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Wednesday, April 23, 2014
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Published: 1/29/2014

Council accepts initial $8.1M plan for streets

Eminent domain against AT&T Ohio OK’d

BY IGNAZIO MESSINA
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Toledo City Council voted Tuesday to approve the Collins administration’s initial list of 2014 street repaving projects and also agreed to begin the process of eminent domain against AT&T Ohio to acquire a small piece of land.

Council voted 10-1 in favor of spending $8.1 million on streets, including $4.2 million from the city’s capital improvement budget for what is called the 2014 “matches and planning program,” which the city submits for state and federal matching grants.

Residential streets are not eligible for those matching grants.

Councilman Theresa Gabriel voted no. Councilman Lindsay Webb was not present.

The Collins administration asked council to spend $2.2 million from the capital improvement budget for the 2014 general resurfacing program and $1.69 million of prior, unused capital improvement money for this year’s street program.

Ms. Gabriel said the Collins administration did not fully answer a question from Councilman Tyrone Riley last week regarding the $1.69 million.

“I don’t think the questions that were asked were given enough detail,” Ms. Gabriel said.

Mr. Riley wanted to know what projects were not completed or if projects were completed under budget, leaving money unspent.

The city expects $23 million from state and federal sources this year. The local contribution for streets is less than the initial allocation for streets in 2013, when former Mayor Mike Bell asked for $7.49 million for matches and planning and $4.4 million for the 2013 general resurfacing program.

Mayor Bell set a city record in 2013 with 61 miles repaved.

Four-lane or wider streets were counted double. That included about 10 miles of streets that were funded in the 2012 budget.

Regarding the eminent domain, the city and AT&T Ohio reached an impasse over the sale of less than 0.19 acre.

The city plans to widen parts of Dorr Street in West Toledo so it can build center median islands and designated turn areas along the roads between Byrne Road and Westwood Avenue.

The city offered to buy the company’s property, which includes an easement and portion at 3332 Dorr.

AT&T Ohio is a subsidiary of AT&T Inc., the global telecommunications giant that is the largest mobile telephone provider in the United States.

In other business, council voted 11-0 in favor of a resolution to support low-income housing tax credits for the third phase of the Lucas Metropolitan Housing Authority’s Collingwood Green Senior Community.

A 65-unit building, which cost $12.7 million, was completed last year.

It was the first phase of a $46 million project at Collingwood Green that will include 272 housing units for low and middle-income families, a community building, and a park.

Contact Ignazio Messina at: imessina@theblade.com or 419-724-6171 or on Twitter @IgnazioMessina.



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