Findlay supervisors OK two new garages to serve corporate center

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Two parking garages will be built in Findlay's RIDC Park West -- the first garages to be built in the township outside of Pittsburgh International Airport.

Findlay supervisors approved development plans Dec. 12 by U.S. Real Estate LP of San Antonio, Texas, to build the garages to serve the Park Place Corporate Center buildings.

Williams Midstream, a Tulsa, Okla.-based natural gas pipeline company, plans to lease and occupy four floors at 2000 Commerce Drive in the center.

The firm, involved locally with the Marcellus Shale industry, is expected to move more than 200 workers from a facility in Moon.

"I certainly like to see any kind of development or economic movement up in RIDC Park," supervisors Chairman Tom Gallant said.

Carl Walker Construction Inc. of Robinson plans to build a two-level, 300-space garage and a three-level, 323-space garage on Commerce Drive.

Work on the $6 million project is expected to begin next month and be completed this summer, project manager Chris McElhaney said.

Chris Caruso, township planning director, said the garages will resolve longtime parking issues that existed even when US Airways used to occupy the RIDC Park buildings.

Also on Dec. 12, Findlay supervisors revised the township's ordinances on gas drilling and on outdoor wood-fired boilers.

Previously, Marcellus Shale drilling was prohibited in all neighborhoods but now gas wells are permitted as a conditional use on residential lots of at least 30 acres in the low-density residential zoning district.

The change means drilling could occur on up to nine properties in the northwestern area of the township near the Beaver County border, Mr. Caruso said. Land pooling is not allowed.

The zone includes parts of Cork-Bocktown, Ferguson, Potato Garden Run and Clinton-Frankfort roads. The area is bordered or surrounded by agricultural properties, where drilling is allowed. Marcellus development also is permitted in business parks and industrial zones and on airport property.

Officials revised the regulations on outdoor wood-fired boilers to establish a minimum stack height of 12 feet.

Mr. Caruso said stacks previously had to extend above the highest peak of homes within 150 feet, but that rule was "impossible" to follow due to the topography of Imperial. He said the new requirement applies to all new and existing boilers.

In other business, Findlay has received $780 in revenue from natural gas drilling impact fees, which will be placed in the capital reserve fund, township manager Gary Klingman said.

He said Findlay could receive significantly more fee revenue in the future if drilling begins within township borders, especially at the airport.


Andrea Iglar, freelance writer:


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