Fremont and Terra State receive big state funding for projects

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FREMONT — Terra State Community College, the Downtown Fremont Amphitheater and Gibsonburg’s plan to convert an old gas station into a new park received welcome financial aid this week as the capital budget for the State provided more than $2.5 million in funding for five Sandusky County projects.

Rep. Gary Click, R-Vickery, announced the county’s funding scholarships on Wednesday.

Terra State garnered the most local capital budget funding, with the college awarding $1.3 million for general improvement projects.

Fremont received $600,000 to be used to revitalize four acres in the city’s downtown area for a new amphitheater.

Fremont received $600,000 in state capital funding to be used to revitalize four acres in the city's downtown core for a new amphitheater.  This project is expected to cost at least $2.2 million.

Cory Stine, Terra State’s senior vice president of innovation and strategic planning, said Thursday that the college’s $1.3 million in funding will go towards improving IT infrastructure and repairing the roof of the Engineering Technologies building.

Public funds give a boost to the amphitheater project

Fremont Mayor Danny Sanchez said the city and the Rotary Club of Fremont were pleased to learn about state funding for the amphitheater project.

“The goal of this project was to get this project grant funded,” Sanchez said.

Sanchez said the city submitted a request for $900,000 in capital funding from the state.

With state funding, plus a $1.6 million federal grant announced in March for the project and $250,000 raised by Fremont Rotary, Sanchez said the project will be at least 95% funded by grants. and donations.

The mayor said the city would cut spending, in terms of the project, if the amphitheater cost more than expected.

Sanchez thanked Click and Ohio Senator Bill Reineke, R-Tiffin, for supporting the project and promoting its inclusion in the state’s capital budget.

He said the city has submitted a request for quotation (RFQ) to engineering design firms and is expected to select a firm next week.

Sanchez said the Fremont Amphitheater is expected to be completed by September 2023.

Fremont Director of Economic Development Bob Gross previously said the initial cost of the amphitheater project was estimated to be around $2.2 million, based on estimates made in the spring of 2021.

Gross said city officials expect to add at least 20% to that estimate, due to inflation and supply chain issues.

Additional county local projects to receive capital funding included:

• $250,000 for paving projects and the addition of barriers at Chudzinski Johansen Conservancy Park.

• $250,000 for general upgrades to the Rotary Lodge renovation at River Cliff Park.

• $150,0000 to convert an abandoned gas station into Gibsonburg Logyard Park.

Marc Glotzbecker, the administrator for the village of Gibsonburg, said the village demolished an old gas station at the Logyard Park site and rehabilitated the property.

Gibsonburg's Logyard Park project received $150,000 in capital improvement funding from the state this week.  Mayor Steve Fought stands in front of a former Sunoco gas station/convenience store in downtown Gibsonburg, which sat vacant for at least a decade until the village finally purchased the property in 2019 and demolished the building in March .  The village plans to redevelop the once dilapidated space into a downtown park, complete with a covered structure and patio, and use it to stimulate downtown economic growth.

A former Sunoco gas station and convenience store occupied the space, remaining vacant for at least a decade until the village finally purchased the property in 2019 and demolished the building in March.

The village plans to redevelop the once dilapidated space into a downtown park, complete with a covered structure and patio, and use it to stimulate downtown economic growth.

“With these dollars, we can continue with our plan to make it a downtown park,” Glotzbecker said.

Glotzbecker said there will be drainage works and sumps installed at the site this summer.

By June 2023, the park should be nearly complete, Glotzbecker said.

The Rotary Lodge project at River Cliff Park

Sandusky County Park District Superintendent Andrew Brown said the park district had never received capital funding from the state until this week.

“The idea that we got $250,000 to do a project like this is fantastic,” Brown said.

The Park District has already spent $350,000 on renovations to the Park Pavilion and moved its offices to the Ballville Township site.

With a proposed $1.5 million project to turn the lodge into a community gathering space, the Park District, Fremont Rotary Club, and city and county officials are spearheading the campaign to raise funds and educate residents. residents of the scope of the project.

Brown said Rotary and the park district will continue to move forward with fundraising for the River Cliff project.

He said the Sandusky County Park District also received a $41,815 Ohio Department of Natural Resources paddle improvement grant this week to build a small boat launch. water, a sidewalk, lighting and a concrete slab at the River Cliff boat launch on the Sandusky River. .

The park district will likely begin work on the ramp in early 2023, Brown said.

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Twitter: @DanielCarson7

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