Mystery solved – Amazon is named as company looking to move into Wood County Crossroads

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN

BG Independent News

The unnamed company looking to locate in the Crossroads area of Wood County has been named – as Amazon – by the county building inspection office.

The company, economic development officials and city leaders where the development is planned remained tight-lipped about the name of the company – dubbing it “Project Freddie” for the purposes of discussion.

However, Wood County Chief Building Inspector Mike Rudey mentioned to the county commissioners this morning that paperwork from Duke Realty had been filed in his office.

The proposed fulfillment center is promising close to 2,000 new jobs. If all goes as planned, it will sit on 100 acres between Deimling Road and South Compass Drive, behind the closed Giant Eagle store off U.S. 20.

According to plans, the site will have parking spaces for 1,800 cars and 300 tractor trailer trucks. Building plans call for constructing a 2.8 million-square-foot, four-story facility.

Rudey explained that Amazon may have to jump through a few extra hoops because the project doesn’t comply with current building code. That is primarily due to the industry being more technologically advanced that the state’s building requirements, Rudey said.

So the company will need to apply for variances from the state.

The building will have four stories, with “robots running around bringing products to the perimeter,” Rudey said.

“The building code says you can’t build it that way,” he said.

But Rudey has no doubt that Amazon will be able to get the necessary variances to proceed. He expects the variances can be secured within two to three weeks, so to not delay the project.

Rudey plans to take a “field trip” to a similar Amazon fulfillment facility in Detroit to see how that operates.

Last week, Rossford’s planning commission granted three variance requests for the project. The business requested to change the zoning of one of the four parcels to planned industrial, the same as the other parcels.

The company also requested a variance to allow screening of the parking lots to be on the exterior of the lots and not on islands within the lots. It also requested a variance to allow an 85-foot tall building. The limit in planned industrial is 35 feet.

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