Colony project asking for more money from Toledo

Developers say the cost is going up for the Colony project and they need the city’s help relocating a sewer project to make the housing project happen.
Published: Jun. 6, 2022 at 6:57 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - Will Toledo taxpayers be kicking in additional money for a new housing and retail complex?

Developers say the cost is going up for the Colony project and they need the city’s help relocating a sewer project to make the housing project happen.

Eventually, the 42-inch storm sewer will be increased to a 72-inch line by Central Ave. near Monroe St. To develop there, the line needs to be moved, so the Colony project is asking for more money to do it.

If granted the financial assistance, the Colony project will have 262 market rate apartment units, 120 hotel rooms, retail space and a restaurant on Central Ave. near ProMedica Toledo Hospital. But, this comes with a much higher price tag.

“Construction pricing has just escalated in such a way that this project has escalated in cost by 29%. There’s a $8.6 million gap between what the project cost in 2020 and what it’s costing today because of supply chain, interest rate escalation and of course the construction price increases,” said Brandon Sehlhorst, Toledo Economic Development Director.

Sehlhorst and his team are asking Toledo City Council for an additional $700,000 to move the storm sewer to the city’s right of way. Its size will be increased and could solve some West Toledo flooding issues. Originally the city was asked to split the $1.5 million needed for the sewer line project with the developer, but now the city is being asked to pay it all.

“Ever since we announced this project there has been a hurdle with the construction prices. This has gone out to bid four times now and each time a gap has occurred,” said Sehlhorst.

The project was initially announced in 2020 and from there developers say the cost has increased. There’s some worry that helping with this cost will set a precedent for future projects. Sehlhorst says the city has paid to move infrastructure in the past and notes the benefits when it’s replaced and improved.

“We don’t have green field sites, we have brown field sites and that is why we have to get creative use city tools, state and federal tools,” said Sehlhorst

This is the same developer who did the Marina District. That complex had about 100 more units and cost $2 million more than what the Colony is projected at. 13abc was told recovery dollars from the federal government cannot be used for sewer project like this.

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