County Council Approves $ 1 Million Loans to Support Renovations of Manufactured, Affordable Housing

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CLEVELAND, OH – Cuyahoga County Council on Tuesday gave full support to county executive Armond Budish’s $ 2 million demands to renovate two vacant buildings into a manufacturing hub and affordable housing complex .

The first of the $ 1 million economic development loans goes to the Manufacturing Advocacy and Growth Network, also known as MAGNET, to convert the former Margaret Ireland School into its headquarters and a central location for organizations, like-minded companies and students.

MAGNET President and CEO Ethan Karp previously outlined his plans for the East 63rd Street building in a meeting with the Cleveland Board of Zoning Appeals in March. It includes a floor for startups to develop and manufacture their products, and classroom space for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District.

Karp also plans to rent office space to other nonprofits in the hope that these groups and other businesses can collaborate and provide jobs to neighboring communities.

Up to 25 percent of the 16-year loan would be repayable and carry an annual interest rate of 2.5 percent. In total, the project is expected to cost $ 15.9 million and add 29 new jobs.

The board unanimously approved the loan, with City Councilor Jack Schron, who sits on MAGNET’s board of directors, abstaining.

City Councilor Nan Baker called it “an exciting project that will help manufacturers grow and create jobs in the economy.”

Another million dollars will help fund the $ 33.3 million Northern Ohio Blanket Mills project to transform the long-vacant industrial building at 3160 West 33rd Street into 60 affordable apartments and approximately 40,000 square feet of first-floor office space.

Up to 25 percent of this 20-year loan would be repayable and carry an annual interest rate of 2.5 percent. The project is expected to create 30 new jobs.

The commercial space on the first floor of the building will house childcare and health care services for low-income residents of the complex and surrounding neighborhood.


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