By Ron Nunnari
CLAYTON — City council held the second reading for seven ordinances at its Aug. 17 meeting declaring emergency status for each ordinance.
Steve Stanley, the founding member of the Montgomery County Transportation Improvement District, also spoke at the meeting.
Stanley has been working with Clay Township and has met several times with the city about a potential water line project along State Route 49.
Stanley was also Montgomery County’s first economic development director in the early 80s and worked at the Danis Companies for about 15 years before being recruited by the county to come back to run the Transportation Improvement District (TID).
The TID is a special purpose local government to help finance and advance transportation and other infrastructure projects that have an economic development bent.
“We help people do planning and financing around capitol projects, typically ones that have an economic development side to them,” Stanley said. “We engage engineers to do preliminary engineering design and we do right-of-way acquisitions, the regular things that you would ordinarily do in a public infrastructure project.”
The TID’s role varies from project to project, Stanley explained, depending on the nature of the project. The TID is sometimes just an advisor or a technical resource, which it is currently doing with Clay Township.
“We are never engaged in a project unless we are asked to come into the project by the host local government, and sometimes that involves more than one local government because we are county-wide in scope,” Stanley said.
The TID has some special powers under Ohio Revised Code where it doesn’t have to competitively bid anything to fast-track economic development projects in order to use a skilled team of people to get the work done.
“We are not general purpose, we are special purpose so we really are specialists in getting projects financed and done rapidly,” he explained.
He detailed some of the projects the TID expedited like the interchanges at Old Troy and Brant Pike in Huber Heights. Austin Landing was the first major project the TID was directly engaged in with Stanley manager of the entire Austin Interchange project.
The TID was also involved in development of Austin Landing over the next 10 years. Union Airpark Boulevard in the city Union where Proctor and Gamble and the new Amazon facility is located was another project the TID was involved in, as well as many others.
Stanley explained that locally QuikTrip has acquired a site that is right at the intersection of Interstate 70 and State Route 49 where they will be constructing a fueling station and a convenience store.
“In that location, they need public water and sewer,” Stanley said. “Montgomery County would be the provider and they have to access that by having a line run all the way from U.S. 40 south to the QuikTrip site.”
Clay Township asked the TID if they could get involved to assist in putting together a public / private partnership to get that project done, and if necessary in the long run to try to place the water line in the limited access right-of-way that exists along 49.
The developer is attempting to acquire private easements to get water line located there.
“Hopefully they will be able to do that, and if not then we will work with ODOT to see if we can, within their policy, to put the water line in the limited access right-of-way,” Stanley said.
The city would like to join in the water line project to get water from that line over to old Clayton, which is something that was promised to residents during the merger.
Stanley said the TID would include the city in the planning stage to figure out what makes sense for all the parties engaged. The project would not begin until financing is figured out to see who is paying for what.
The TID would not be involved in the construction of the water line for QuikTrip, but tapping into that line to get water to the old village would be something the TID would be engaged in with the city to help get it constructed.
“That has yet to be decided. We are a long way from that,” Stanley noted. “There is a lot more work to do, like where the line could be, work out its budget and how it is going to be constructed and who is going to pay for what.”
The advantage to QuikTrip, Clay Township and to the city would be some cost sharing on the main line and that would save everyone money. The city would have to pay for the portion involving getting water to the old village.
“QuikTrip has made a commitment to the amount of money they are willing to put into the water line project, which is pretty substantial – more substantial than what I would ordinarily be accustomed to, so I think this is a doable project,” Stanley said.
“I think if it is a high enough priority for you, both the city and the township have funds available right now that we could apply to the project activity, and I think we can make this work.”
Reach Ron Nunnari at [email protected].