Two blighted homes will be demolished on Southwest Avenue in Tallmadge

Safety forces will use buildings for training before they are torn down

Laura Freeman
Kent Weeklies
These homes at 16 and 22 Southwest Ave. in Tallmadge are slated for demolition. The city received a grant to help pay for the demolition.

TALLMADGE – Two vacant city-owned homes on Southwest Avenue will be demolished after safety forces use them for training.

City Council Oct. 8 unanimously approved funding from the Summit County Land Reutilization Corporation (Summit County Land Bank) Community Development Matching Grant Fund for the demolition of the structures deemed blighted at 16 and 22 Southwest Ave. The legislation also authorizes Mayor David Kline to "enter into all necessary agreements" to tear down the homes.

Kline said the city applied through the Summit County Land Bank and received a matching grant for $11,900, which is 50% of the estimated cost for the demolition of the buildings. The city has $15,000 in the current budget for demolition. A date was not announced for the demolition

This home at 16 Southwest Ave. is one of two vacant houses that the city of Tallmadge is planning to demolish.

“The foundations are falling apart,” Kline said. “We inherited these buildings. The property owners wanted to get rid of them and sold them to the city at a reduced rate. Tenants were living there but have moved out.”

Tallmadge Assistant Fire Chief Ben Stasik said the firefighters would use the buildings for search and rescue or throwing ladders during shift training but no dates have been set. No permits are needed for the type of training they will be doing. Police Chief Ron Williams said the police force would not be training at the houses on Southwest Avenue.

The land, which is 0.4 acres at 16 Southwest Ave., and 0.23 acres at 22 Southwest Ave. will be land banked for future development, the mayor said. The plots are side by side and the city owns the property behind it.

This home at 22 Southwest Ave. in Tallmadge is slated for demolition.

“I’d like to see private partnership with a developer,” Kline said.

The city could have a developer purchase the land or the city could lease it, he said.

“The preference would be to have a developer see an opportunity to put some parcels together for economic development,” Kline said.

Gannett reporter Laura Freeman can be reached at lfreeman@recordpub.com