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More than $2.2M is bid for Pilkington Building

Downtown developers David Ball and Patrick Hylant of Ohio Building Co. have made an offer to buy the building at 811 Madison Ave., Kelly Forgette, Toledo's acting manager of real estate, said.

The offer is for more than $2.2 million, which includes $725,000 cash and assuming the $1.48 million balance on the state loan the city obtained to buy the building in 1993, Ms. Forgette said.

“We are under contract to buy it,” Mr. Ball said yesterday, adding that his company is the only interested party.

The company is in the early stages of a 30-day “due diligence” period, in which the building will be inspected and the company will make a final determination on whether to buy it, he said.

Mr. Ball said he and various partners have a substantial investment in other buildings downtown, including the Ohio Building, the Gardner Building, and the Woolworth and Kresge Buildings. He said buying another downtown building is a way to protect his investments there.

Mr. Ball said his company's goal is to keep Pilkington Plc., formerly LOF, as a tenant after the lease expires at the end of 2003, but he doesn't know whether Pilkington intends to stay.

“Our hope is that Pilkington would remain as a tenant there and that we could be a good landlord for a great company,” he said.

If Pilkington leaves, Mr. Ball said the company likely would renovate the building and look for another tenant, possibly Mr. Hylant's company, Hylant Administrative Services.

The city bought the building from what was then LOF in an effort to keep the company's corporate headquarters in Toledo, specifically downtown.

To buy the building, the city obtained a state loan for $4,236,667 and two $500,000 grants for a total of $5,236,667.

The city then entered into a lease agreement with LOF so that its monthly lease payments, which are about $50,000, went directly to the state to repay the loan, Ms. Forgette said.

Toledo has used no city money on the building's purchase, renovation, or loan repayment, she said. The loan is to be paid off by December, 2003, at which time Pilkington's lease ends. Pilkington had the option to buy the building but waived it, she added.

In addition to paying back the state loan, part of the lease required Pilkington to pay the city $2,000 a month in rent, Law Director Barbara Herring said. The money, which totals more than $100,000, was put into an account solely for use on the building, Mrs. Herring said.

The city intends to use the money to cover such things as closing costs and other real estate or professional expenses that may result from the proposed sale, Ms. Forgette said. She said if Ohio Building still is interested once it finishes its survey of the building, she will forward the appropriate legislation to council, possibly before the end of the month.

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