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Wadsworth Planning Commission approves two proposals

By Beau Dusz correspondent

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Aquatic Center rendering
This is a rendering of the proposed Aquatic Center by the design architects Braun & Steidl approved by the Planning Commission Monday. (Beau Dusz/

WADSWORTH: After holding public hearings on each of two issues Monday, the Wadsworth Planning Commission approved both proposals but added conditions to each based upon public input.

At a hearing on a proposal to build a 147-unit apartment complex at the northeast corner of Hinkle Drive and Reimer Road area, residents raised concerns about the present traffic congestion at the nearby Reimer Road and State Road intersection and the speed of the traffic on Reimer Road.

After hearing those concerns, the commission tacked on a condition requiring a reassessment of the traffic study to determine if any road improvements are needed. If improvements are required, the developer of the apartment complex, to be called Redwood Acres, along with other developments in the area may have to share in the expenses of those improvements.

The apartment complex is planned to be built in two phases with the units to be between 1,123 and 1,294 square feet with a majority having a two-car garage.

Other conditions of approval include obtaining a wetland permit from the Corps of Engineers and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and providing a report to address the coalmines known to be on the site. The report is to indicate the area can support the development or the developer is to accept the responsibility for damages created by any mine subsidence.

The second public hearing covered a plan for the city to build an Aquatic Center on city-owned land at 625 Broad St. just north of the new Community Center.

At that hearing, David King raised concerns about the safety of those using the pool. King noted, with the plans as proposed, a number of ways are available if someone intends to harm those using the pool. The commission added a condition to the approval that the safety director is to assess the plans to determine if any safety measures are needed especially in the "drop-off" area. Commission members suggested bollards or concrete decorative planters might be needed as safety features. The commission also added the requirement that music is not to be played through the public address system.

King also raised the question of the right of Mayor Robin Laubaugh and Service Director Chris Easton to vote on the issue since they are representatives of the city, which may be a "conflict of interest."  When the commission voted, Laubaugh and Easton abstained.

Another resident questioned how the Aquatic Center is going to be financed. Easton said part of the money would come from the general fund. The commissioners suggested he go to the Public Ways Committee, which deals with this issue.

Commission Chairman Jim Cummings said the commission's role is not to determine if the center is a good idea but only to determine if it meets the zoning code. 

The Aquatic Center, to be built on three acres, is planned for a leisure pool, lap pool and slide splashdown. The complex is to be surrounded by a six-foot chain link vinyl fence with mounding in some areas.

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