Byers Imports doing upgrade of Whitehall Dealership

Byers Imports is doing a double upgrade of its Whitehall auto dealership.

George Byers Kauffman, Byers Auto Group vice president, said the company is making multi-million dollar improvements at 401 N. Hamilton Road both for its Subaru and Audi stores.

“This is something that’s needed,” he told me Thursday. “Subaru is a good seller, but they’ve been pushed here to the back of the building. It’s overdue that it gets its own dedicated facility.”

What was the 5,000-square-foot Audi building on the 19-acre site is being expanded and converted into a Subaru dealership expected to re-open in early June.

Kauffman believes it will be the largest in the state of Ohio.

“It’s going to have all the things our customers have been asking for,” he said.

Features include a dedicated service drive and amenities like wi-fi and charging stations and quiet rooms for customers who need to work while waiting for their vehicle. The building is being designed with Subaru’s new look, which Kauffman described as “outdoorsy,” fitting the brand’s reputation.

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Mark F. Taggart Co. lands key tenant for Whitehall industrial building

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Gail Martineau, City of Whitehall

Mark F. Taggart Co. has landed a pair of key tenants for industrial buildings in Whitehall and Gahanna, one of the leases filling a spec property in Gahanna.

The Columbus real estate firm signed the first tenant for its Air South Commerce Center under construction in Whitehall, with Continental Auto Parts LLC taking 50,000 square feet of the 140,000-square-foot building.

“They are going to be distributing high-quality aftermarket auto parts,” President Mark Taggart said. “They’re new to Columbus.”

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Heartland Bank chooses Whitehall for new HQ

Heartland Bank chooses Whitehall: The City of Whitehall announced at its State of the City Address Wednesday evening that Heartland Bank has chosen Whitehall for its new, expanded corporate headquarters.

Heartland’s plans include a two-story, 60,000-square-foot building located along North Hamilton Road at the gateway of Whitehall’s Community Park. The company has chosen the national architectural firm Moody Nolan for the project.

The corporate center, which will also feature Heartland’s 15th central Ohio branch office, will be positioned on a six-acre site that has served as the Whitehall Parks Maintenance Complex.

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Kroger Eyes Whitehall Site

Kroger Eyes Whitehall Site: Kroger Co. wants to move its Whitehall supermarket across Broad Street to the site of a former Big Bear, with financial assistance from the city.

The Cincinnati-based grocer would close its 65,000-square-foot store at 3675 E. Broad St. and open a 105,000-square-foot location on the west end of the Town and Country Shopping Center.

The former Big Bear and other nearby vacant storefronts – 150,000 square feet in all – would be demolished, said Zach Woodruff, director for the Whitehall Public Service/Building Department.

Kroger Eyes Whitehall Site

“It certainly has historical significance to Whitehall,” Woodruff said of the strip center at 3662-3712 E. Broad St. “(And) as the front door to our Broad Street gateway, that location has significance to us from a development standpoint.”

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Construction begins on New Industrial Building

 

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Construction begins on a new 140,000-square-foot industrial building on the corner of Hamilton Road and Poth Road. The first tenant on the Taggart Co. led project has been identified as an auto parts distributor that will bring 40 jobs to the City of Whitehall. The project is part of a three phase plan for the property which includes two additional industrial structures.


Craft beer: Childhood friends creating a brewery

Craft beer comes to Whitehall: In the cramped office in a Whitehall industrial park, the aspirations of Anthony McKeivier and Tony Hill are stacked in a pyramid atop a wooden desk.

Cardboard six-pack bottle totes rise to the ceiling: Columbus Brewing, Fat Head’s Brewery, SweetWater Brewing, Founders Brewing, Great Divide Brewing, Victory Brewing.

“That’s research and development,” McKeivier said.

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‘ThisWeekNews’ – District: Rise in property value means ‘good things happening’

Rise in property value: For the first time in eight years, property evaluation in the Whitehall City School District has increased, according to the district’s fiscal-year tax budget for 2017.

“This is a sign of good things happening in the school district from an economic-development standpoint,” Whitehall Treasurer Steve McAfee said.

The district’s evaluation increased from $217.9 million last year to $221.8 million this year, according to the tax budget.

The rise is attributed chiefly to an increase in the value of commercial property in the district, McAfee said.

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Whitehall’s new Planet Fitness to help residents’ resolutions become reality

Whitehall PF 2A full-service Planet Fitness will open its doors later this month at the corner of Main Street and Hamilton Road in Whitehall.

The gym, the only of its kind in the city, will feature more than 100 pieces of cardio equipment, strength-training equipment, a circuit-training room, massage chairs, hydro-massage beds and tanning, among other things.

Alex Baker, the director of operations for the facility said that he envisions
Whitehall PF 1the Whitehall Planet Fitness to be a “Judgement Free,” comfortable atmosphere and a second home for members. Many Whitehall-area residents have already signed up.

“It’s a place where you can come here and see friends,” Baker said.

Planet Fitness, located at 920 S. Hamilton Road, will have nearly 20 employees, including a certified personal trainer, who will offer free training to members.

The facility will be open around the clock from Monday at 5 a.m. through Friday at 9 p.m. and from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on the weekends.

This is the first Planet Fitness franchise location the Baker Group owns in Ohio. The group owns eight facilities in Indiana and two in Tennessee.

For more information about the Whitehall Planet Fitness Development, please contact Whitehall Director of Development Zach Woodruff at 614-237-8612 or via email at zach.woodruff@whitehall-oh.us. For more information about how to join Planet Fitness, please visit www.planetfitness.com or call 614-601-5556.

Maggard and City concentrate on business in 2016

Maggard and City concentrate on business: Whitehall Mayor Kim Maggard said she is ready to build on the successes of her first term and address several issues that have frustrated residents, including crime.

Voters re-elected Maggard in November to a second term. As 2015 came to a close, Maggard and Development Director Zach Woodruff shared their goals for the new year.

They include continuing to build on the momentum achieved last year in commercial development and an initiative to reduce violent crime by revamping policing at the street level and asking for the community’s help in identifying criminals.

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