Proposed Centerville Place project falls through

A private investor has withdrawn a proposal for a $130 million plus redevelopment at Ohio 48 between Sheehan and Spring Valley roads in Centerville, including the vacant Kroger building.

“We are extremely disappointed by this decision, as we believe the space has the potential to become a vibrant gateway to Centerville. City Staff, volunteers and community members have devoted months of hard work trying to make that goal a reality, for which I am very appreciative,” Mayor Brooks Compton said in a statement.

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The property is owned by Queen City Lease Management and Larry Dillin worked as manager on behalf of the investor.

Dillin had been working with investors and proposing redeveloping Centerville Place into a mix of office, retail, and restaurant space as well as about 350 housing units.

Dillin, president of Dillin LLC, said in a statement that the investors had the need to focus on other parts of their business which prevented their comfort in an investment of this magnitude.

“Today’s announcement is a disappointment personally and for Dillin staff, but we understand that both the community and the investors have a voice in bringing a project to life,” Dillin stated. “It’s an unfortunate turn of events, and it’s most disappointing for the Community of Centerville, it’s elected officials, city staff and the residents surrounding the development.”

The city previously said a tenant was committed to a 60,000-square-foot office on site, though the developer had never named the tenant.

The owner of the property will still control the Centerville Place shopping center, which is now a shopping strip home to tenants like Bath and Body Works, Great Clips, Starbucks, Kroger Marketplace.

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“Our staff members enjoyed working with Larry Dillin and his team. His meticulous approach to the project adhered to the City’s vision for that space,” City Manager Wayne Davis said in a statement. “While we are disheartened, it was staff’s pleasure to work as hard as we could for a project that would have been a game changer for our community. While this project as initially presented will not be going forward, we remain committed to Centerville Place as this is a critical component of our economic development plans for our community. We will not rest until we are able to bring a project to this area that is befitting of its many great businesses and the Centerville community as a whole.”

The Centerville city council was original scheduled to vote Jan. 27 on the redevelopment.

“This challenging project stretched our staff to think differently about redevelopment opportunities, and we learned a lot that we can apply to other future projects. We are better because of this work,” Development Director Michael Norton-Smith said.

Dillin said in a press release that “While the team at Dillin working directly on the Centerville project is disappointed, we’re fortunate to refocus that staff to other development projects that we will be accelerating in 2020 and beyond.”

Dillin took over the development of the Austin Landing project in 2016 until it’s sale late in 2019. He was also behind the Levis Commons development in the Toledo region.

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