The development of Creekside Industrial Park as the first shovel-ready commercial site in Delaware County is one step closer to becoming a reality.

County commissioners authorized the county administrator to give notice of proposed Tax Increment Financing (TIF) and Community Reinvestment Area (CRA) exemptions to the Olentangy Local School District and the Delaware Area Career Center.

“We’re very excited,” Director of Economic Development Bob Lamb said. “This would be one of the first shovel-ready sites within the county targeted towards key industry that we believe will grow jobs as well as the tax base within the county.”

Lamb said the Creekside Industrial Park will be located on about 100 acres of land east of Menards on U.S. 23. He said the developer’s proposal requests both TIF and CRA to assist in preparing the site. Lamb said it would be a 20-year, 75 percent TIF.

Commissioner Jeff Benton said he hopes the site will be developed soon.

“We do really need shovel ready sites to be economically competitive in the marketplace,” Benton said. “This is a very nice first step at having more shovel ready sites in Delaware County.”

Commissioner Gary Merrell said he would support this first step in the process of the TIF and CRA, but needs more information.

“I’ve asked to see a model for the whole area,” he said. “I need to see the dollars that are going to be there out of this TIF to support an overpass over the tracks there and the roads into the area. I also ask to see what kind of jobs will be brought into the area as part of the proposal as well. My priority is if we don’t get that done, nothing else matters.”

Merrell said the county needs to be use caution in what it promises the developer.

“I’m hoping by the end of the month to bring the agreement to the commissioners to vote on,” Lamb said.

Lamb said he has been in meetings with Orange Township and the school districts. He said there has been work done to finalize the documentation with Orange Township as a partner.

“Overall Orange Township understands the need for improvements that have a regional impact,” said Orange Township Administrator Lee Bodnar. “Though, we look forward to the cost sharing opportunities with other entities.”

Lamb said in order for the county to be competitive and attract more business, more shovel-ready sites are needed to showcase.

“I think it will help bring some of those industrial opportunities to the county so we can diversify the tax base,” he said.

Ohio Revised Code 3735.67 states that if the construction of a commercial or industrial property is to be exempted from taxation, “… prior to the commencement of construction or remodeling, shall enter into a written agreement, binding on both parties for a period of time that does not end prior to the end of the period of the exemption, … .”

The ORC states, “… if such an agreement is subject to approval by the board of education of the school district within the territory of which the property is or will be located, the agreement shall not be formally approved by the legislative authority until the board of education approves the agreement …”

.neFileBlock {
margin-bottom: 20px;
.neFileBlock p {
margin: 0px 0px 0px 0px;
.neFileBlock .neFile {
border-bottom: 1px dotted #aaa;
padding-bottom: 5px;
padding-top: 10px;
.neFileBlock .neCaption {
font-size: 85%;


By D. Anthony Botkin

[email protected]

D. Anthony Botkin may be reached at 740-413-0902 or on Twitter @dabotkin.