The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

April 11, 2013

Geneva schools still looking to sell Route 20 land

By MARGIE NETZEL - mnetzel@starbeacon.com
Star Beacon

GENEVA — The former site of the Platt R. Spencer school on Route 20 is still for sale, Geneva schools Superintendent Mary Zappitelli said, as there were no bids at the public auction last month.

The 8.84 acres of land at 4641 N. Ridge Road was up for live auction with a minimum bid of $50,000, but with no takers,  Zappitelli said the school board is now free to sell the land in a private sale.

“According to Ohio Revised Code, because the property did not sell at auction we can now move forward selling the Spencer land in a private sale,” she said.

All school property must first be offered at public auction before a private sale can be considered, Zappitelli said.

The property will be sold “as is,” Zappitelli said, with the understanding that there will be no further demolition or remediation of the property by the board. The brick school was demolished and the land was cleared last year.

“I hope to be able to have (the land) listed for sale within a month,” she said. “We are working on the details.”

While Zappitelli works on the listing, interested buyers can inquire about the land for sale by contacting Zappitelli at 466-4831 or sending a letter of interest to 135 S. Eagle St., Geneva 44041.

The district has sold several parcels as part of the district-wide construction projects, which included the consolidation of Geneva and Platt R. Spencer schools. The board of education sold the former Geneva Elementary property on South Eagle Street to the city of Geneva. The land will be leased to the proposed wine and culinary business incubator called The Pairings Wine and Culinary Experience.

In addition, the city has acted on a contractual option and purchase the Geneva Area City School’s administration building on South Eagle Street and lease the property back to the district.

District administrators are also in talks with the city about the future of Memorial Field, which was leased to Spire Institute but is no longer usable after a fire in the main grandstand last year.

While the exact use for Memorial Field has not been decided, the board of education, citing public safety reasons, will move forward with plans to demolish the grandstand and visitor’s bleachers.