New life in the works for former Champion Spark Plug site

The City of Toledo is planning to buy the property from the current owner and list the full site for sale
Published: Jan. 12, 2021 at 6:16 PM EST
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - The former Champion Spark Plug site in Toledo has a rich history. After the plant closed, the space has been vacant, then an eyesore and now an empty space just waiting for a developer.

The City of Toledo Economic Development team says it is ready to get involved again. This time, with the hopes of finding a long-term company willing to invest in the city.

The industrial site borders Montrose, Nebraska and Midway Plaisance St. and for years has been a major problem for people living in the neighborhood. When Champion moved out, the space was vacant, then a buyer moved in and started demo but never finished. He left behind an unsafe space that was filled with debris. The property then changed hands again to another buyer that realized fixing up the space came with a massive price tag. In 2018, the U.S. EPA remediated the space making it ready for development.

The City of Toledo is proposing buying the remaining 8 acres of the property from the current owner for $10 and then listing the entire industrial site for sale with a commercial broker.

Brandon Sehlhorst, the Commissioner of Economic Development for the City of Toledo, says the city is running low on space for businesses so they are looking for unused spaces that can be marketed to companies looking for land, with the hopes that they invest in Toledo.

Sehlhorst says the former Champion Spark Plug site is unique because it is a large site in the 17-20 acre range and sits right next to a rail line. With recent success developing large industrial site, Sehlhorst is hoping for another positive in the future for Toledo’s junction neighborhood.

“A lot of these things are what companies are looking for and our goal is to develop that property and further support the neighborhoods that surround it,” says Sehlhorst.

City Council needs to sign off on the proposal from the City to purchase the property. The item is part of the council meeting on January 19th.

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