MACEDONIA -- An Iroquois Run house plagued with water-related problems will be torn down by the Summit County Land Bank this spring, city officials said. In its place, a retention pond that town leaders believe will help out neighboring properties will be built. It will be funded through the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District's community cost sharing account.
The city will not have to pay for either the house demolition or for constructing the retention pond, City Engineer Joe Gigliotti said.
Mayor Joe Migliorini said while the city was in the process of getting bids to try to tear down the house at 883 Iroquois Run, "we approached the Summit County Land Bank. They indicated they would tear down the house."
Gigliotti added, "The Land Bank will utilize their own funds for the demolition. The Land Bank does not charge the city for the demolition."
The cost of demolishing the house was estimated at about $58,000, Gigliotti said.
The mayor said the house was built as part of a sub-division in the 1960s, but there were water problems.
Mike and Terri Gabriel, the property owners for 16 years, said they experienced at least one major flood every year and repeatedly had to replace parts of their home.
Mike Gabriel previously told the News Leader he estimates he spent at least $30,000 trying to solve the problem.
City Council voted unanimously in 2015 to purchase the home for an amount not to exceed $156,000 after the city exhausted all possible options to control the flooding.
Former Mayor Don Kuchta previously said the purchase was necessary and goes back years to the city trying to help because water from Sugar Bush Park runs down a steep decline onto the Gabriel's property. Kuchta said a retention pond would take some of the pressure off the homes surrounding it.
Migliorini said the site will be made into a retention basin, likely this summer.
"It will look like a neighborhood park," he said.
Gigliotti said the retention pool's cost, which will be paid by the NEORSD community cost share account, will be about $44,000 including construction, professional services and placing the property into a conservation easement.
However, Migliorini added, "In hindsight, the city set a dangerous precedent, buying somebody's property to take care of a water problem. If the city were to do that in every instance, we'd be buying up properties all over the city. We don't have the funds to do that."
Mike Lesko: 330-541-9432