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Hudson -- Council approved a resolution 5-0 to authorize the city manager to enter into a letter of intent for the development of a conceptual plan for the Downtown Phase II project.
City Manager Jane Howington named Testa Companies as the developer for project. Council had to approve the choice.
Council member Alex Kelemen abstained from the vote and did not give any reason when asked why.
"The recommendation was not an easy one," said Mayor David Basil. "There were a number of good candidates."
Testa Companies was chosen from three finalists out of seven initial applicants who submitted their qualifications to do the project earlier in the year.
The letter of intent does not lock the city or Council into anything but allows the city manager to take the next step in the process to finalize a plan, Basil said. The same process was followed in the development of First & Main.
Council President Hal DeSassure also stressed the letter of intent is with a "potential" developer.
"If the developer comes up with something we don't like, we are not committed," DeSaussure said.
Council member Dennis Hanink concurred about how it is part of a process.
"We're not immediately locked in to a developer's project," he said. "This is a step before a final agreement."
No deadline for the conceptual plan was given.
The staff, city manager and a lot of people spent time analyzing this and bringing it forth, said Council member Dan Williams.
The Downtown Phase II project includes redevelopment of 20.5 acres in the downtown area of historic Hudson which would include a mix of office and residential units, supporting the existing downtown retail district.
Testa Companies was founded in 1967 as a custom home builder and has expanded to include property management, Realtor, development, sales, leasing, building supply, construction and more.
Some of its projects include the Village at AnnaDean in Barberton, a medical office building with senior apartments above retail; Village of Town Center in Tallmadge, with a Western Reserve architecture for ground floor commercial space, senior housing and fourth floor condos; and a mixed-use project in Cuyahoga Falls with Tudor architecture to blend with nearby Tudor-style homes.
The presentation by Testa Companies can be viewed on the city website at www.hudosn.oh.us.