Albany officials support annexation request

By STEVE ROBB Messenger staff journalist

Click here to see original story in the Athens Messenger.

Albany officials urged the Athens County Commissioners on Tuesday to allow the annexation of a piece of land into the village.

G&H Diversified Properties is seeking annexation of 1.483 acres of property located at the intersection of Route 50 and Meadowbrook Road. The site is on the opposite side of Meadowbrook from the Subway restaurant.

The commissioners held a hearing Tuesday on the proposed annexation.

Attorney Ken Ryan, attorney for G&H, told the commissioners that the intent is to put the site to a commercial use, but said after the meeting that he does not believe the landowners have a specific use lined up.

This marks the second attempt to annex the property, the first being in 2017. The initial attempt did not go forward because the commissioners noted that the land did not actually border the village. The village corporate limits extend to the center line of Meadowbrook Road, but the G&H property only extended to the edge of the road.

Commissioner Lenny Eliason raise the same concern Tuesday.

However, Ryan said G&H has since acquired the narrow strip of land that separated its property from the village.

Albany Mayor Tim Kirkendall and Village Council President Neal Reynolds urged the commissioners to approve the annexation request.

“We do support this,” Kirkendall said. “We’re trying very hard out there to move the village along, get some economic development and some job creation out there.”

Kirkendall and Reynolds said that if the property in annexed, the land will likely be zoned commercial.

“…I think it’s a step in the right direction for job creation. The village supports this 100 percent, it’s very welcome,” Reynolds said.

Real estate broker Don Linder told the commissioners that commercial use of the property is its best use.

“…It’s a relatively a smaller piece, but, for its location on a corner of a main corridor, is a great location from a real estate perspective and (as a development) opportunity,” Linder said.

Eliason said the commissioners have 30 days to decide whether to release the property for annexation. He said he wants Assistant County Prosecutor Zach Saunders to review the proposal in regard to whether the property now borders Albany.