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As published in Toledo Business Journal - October 1, 2018

The structures at 24 Adams Street (L) and 149 Frost Parkway (R) in Tiffin

The structures at 24 Adams Street (L) and 149 Frost Parkway (R) in Tiffin

Historic restorations underway in Tiffin

Project includes restoration of three buildings in Tiffin’s Fort Ball – Railroad Area Historic District

The Ohio Development Services Agency (ODSA) awarded Monument Properties an Oho Historic Preservation Tax Credit worth $249,784 for a $1.6 million project to rehabilitate three historic buildings located at 24 and 25 Adams and 149 Frost Parkway in Tiffin in its Fort Ball – Railroad Area Historic District.

The building’s original construction dates range from 1856 to 1895 and are in Queen Anne and Italianate styles. After rehabilitation, the buildings will serve as apartments and bed-and-breakfast suites, as well as one building housing a small retail space. ACM is the general contractor for the project.

John Kerschner, who is managing the project and put in application for the tax credits, said, “With this rehabilitation, and because we were awarded tax credits, we have to follow the National Park Service recommendations for historic treatments on historic buildings. There are 49 preservation briefs that outline how certain things have to be done within the rehabilitation. So basically, we have historic pictures of the building where we’re trying to bring them back to that era, but if we don’t have a certain material, we have to do our best to make it compatible. With this project, each of the three buildings are unique, so we’re going through the whole process – interior and exterior rehabilitation of all three buildings – to make them to as close to the original structures as possible.”

The period of significance (POS) of the Fort Ball – Railroad Area Historic District, according to Kershner, was 1835 to 1915.

The building located at 24 Adams Street was constructed in 1856 and was a two-story Italianate style single-family residence during the POS. It eventually evolved into two separate apartments by 1961, and then four separate apartments circa 1975, based on the construction materials used, noted Kershner.

After rehabilitation, the 24 Adams building is slated to be apartments and executive suites, noted Kerschner.

The structure at 25 Adams Street in Tiffin

The structure at 25 Adams Street is a two-and-a-half story quintessential Queen Anne style single-family residence that was built in 1900, and later, in 1946, was run as a convalescent home. Kerschner noted that some of the second floor rooms were converted into suites with bathrooms.

This building’s physical layout, according to Kerschner, was altered in the 1946 conversion, but all of the common entrances date to the POS. It is on the south side of Adams Street and at the southwest corner of the first alley, west of North Monroe Street in Tiffin.

“This building has one rectangular volume with two 2-story bays and a tower at the southwest corner. Notable elements of the Queen Anne style include cross gabled roof, decorative shingles in the gables, decorative brickwork in the chimneys, slate roofs with finial ornaments at the peaks, bay windows, multi-paned leaded windows, ornate stain glass windows, and a three-story round tower with a conical roof,” said Kershner.

The plan for this structure has yet to be determined, noted Kerschner, due to zoning issues and its ability to be re-zoned.

The structure at 149 Frost Parkway was built in 1865. It was a two-and-a-half story Queen Anne style duplex during the POS, and it evolved into two separate, one-bedroom apartments by 1887.

“The original layout of the structure was most likely a single-family home, but by 1887, an enclosed exterior stairwell separated the upper and lower units. It was built on one lot and has always been titled as a single property,” said Kershner.

The 149 Frost Parkway building is expected to have retail space on the first floor with a two-bedroom apartment on the second floor.

When speaking the significance this project will have on the area and Tiffin as a whole, Kerschner said, “The city of Tiffin will not only gain financially because of increased taxes and better high-end homes and available high-end apartments, but also, these buildings are cornerstones of a neighborhood that had fallen into blight over the years. This is really going to revitalize that neighborhood and area in general. It’s basically a scenario of, ‘when we fix our house, you’re going to feel the need to fix yours. If your neighbor paints their house and makes yours not look as good, you’re going to feel the need to paint yours.’ So really, this project is going to revitalize these buildings and ultimately this neighborhood, which is great for the Tiffin community.”

David Zak, president and CEO of Seneca Industrial & Economic Development Corporation (SIEDC) added, “This is a very exciting project for our community, and we view it another key piece contributing to the transformation of downtown Tiffin. Our economy continues to grow across all sectors, and this is another example of our momentum.”

Construction began in late June and is expected to be complete within two years.