The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

May 16, 2013

Downtown Conneaut Dollar General a big step closer to becoming reality

By MARK TODD - mtodd@starbeacon.com
Star Beacon

CONNEAUT — Papers have been signed and money has changed hands, clearing the way for work to begin in earnest on a new retail store in downtown Conneaut, officials said.

Bob Tucker, of Howard Hanna in Ashtabula, said the sale of property connected with a pending Dollar General store has been finalized. Demolition of a handful of buildings in the area of State, Washington and Harbor streets is expected to follow very soon, he said.

“It’s a done deal,” Tucker said.

The buyer, Zaremba Group, had not obtained demolition permits as of early Wednesday afternoon, said a City Hall spokesperson.

Four buildings will be torn down to make room for a 9,100-square-foot store. The district will see marked improvement by eliminating “three unsightly buildings,” Tucker said.

It’s believed the store will be ready for business in late summer or early fall, officials have said. It will be the second Dollar General to be built in town this year. Work has already begun on a similarly-sized store at the northeast corner of Gore and West Main (Route 20) roads on the city’s west side. That store has a different developer.

Progress on the downtown store was slowed somewhat by some tweaking to the building’s exterior. City officials insisted on — and secured — some cosmetic improvements that would bring its appearance more in line with neighboring buildings. Both projects have been enthusiastically endorsed by the city’s Planning Commission.

The downtown store will replace a Dollar General that has operated for many years from a storefront at Main and Washington streets.