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Two New Hotels Open in Akron

24 Nov 2014, 2:58 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Homewood Suites by Hilton Akron Fairlawn

Homewood Suites by Hilton has announced the opening of its newest property in the state of Ohio. Called the Homewood Suites by Hilton Akron Fairlawn, OH, it is the brand’s first hotel in the Akron area and its 15th in the state.

The new Homewood Suites by Hilton Akron Fairlawn is located at 210 Springside Drive, close to downtown Akron and its many restaurants, shops and popular attractions. It has 105 studio, one- or two-bedroom suites, each with complimentary living areas, Internet access, kitchens and flat-screen TVs. According to the hotel’s website, room rates start at $159 per night. The Homewood Suites by Hilton Akron Fairlawn also features a 1,624-square-foot boardroom that can accommodate as many as 47 people, a business center, a swimming pool, a fitness center and a 24-hour shop.

“Homewood Suites Akron Fairlawn is the ideal place to stay for guests looking for value-added amenities like our daily complimentary breakfast and high-quality fitness center,” Jenilee Taylor, the new hotel’s general manager, said in a statement. “Our hotel, in close proximity to area attractions, offers guests everything they need to feel comfortable while visiting for one night or an extended period.” TMI Hospitality is the owner of the new Homewood Suites by Hilton Akron Fairlawn.

Another Akron hotel also opened its doors to the public, just one day before the Homewood Suites by Hilton Akron Fairlawn. The Hilton Garden Inn Akron is the first new hotel constructed in the city since 1980.

Pittsburgh-based Summit Development and Industrial Realty Group LLC started work on the $18 million project last year, on three acres of land formerly occupied by the Goodyear world headquarters. It delivered a 139-room hotel with a full restaurant and bar, an indoor swimming pool, a fitness center and meeting rooms offering about 3,000 square feet of flexible space.

The Hilton Garden Inn Akron is part of the larger East End mixed-use project. Also developed by IRG and Summit, when finished, it will bring 1.7 million square feet of offices, retail and residences to Akron.

Photo credit: www.facebook.com/AkronFairlawnHomewood

Investors Buy Two Cuyahoga Falls Shopping Centers

19 Nov 2014, 4:37 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

The Plaza at Chapel Hill

Two Cuyahoga Falls shopping centers have changed hands this month in separate transactions. The Plaza at Chapel Hill and the Shoppes at Chapel Hill are both located on Howe Avenue.

Devonshire REIT Inc. bought the larger of the two properties, The Plaza at Chapel Hill. The real estate investment trust announced the acquisition on Nov. 12. It purchased The Plaza at Chapel Hill together with two other properties, the 174,384-square-foot Oak Park Town Center, in Chattanooga, Tenn., and the 105,698-square-foot Forest Park Plaza, in Brazil, Ind. Devonshire REIT paid $88.4 million for the three shopping centers.

The Plaza at Chapel Hill is located on Highway 8. It offers 456,044 square feet of space and is home to several national tenants, among them Giant Eagle, TJ Maxx and Dick’s Sporting Goods. At the time of the sale, the shopping center was 94.3 percent occupied.

“Each of these properties sits at the gateway entrance to their respective city, is the dominant shopping center in the area, and boasts an exciting mix of tenants. With 95 percent average occupancy and predominantly national tenants, the centers provide both stable cash flow and upside potential. The Plaza at Chapel Hill is especially noteworthy because it’s the single-largest property acquisition in the history of Devonshire, and it offers 18 acres of undeveloped space that’s already drawing significant interest,” Mike Denman, executive vice president of real estate operations for Devonshire REIT, said in a statement for the press.

According to Crain’s Cleveland, Damar Ltd. sold the Shoppes at Chapel Hill to Akron Jupiter L.L.C. and Akron NPR L.L.C., two affiliates of Boca Raton-based Pebb Enterprises. The sale price was $10.5 million. The shopping center is located at 645 Howe Ave. It was constructed in 1992 and offers 85,000 square feet of space. Its tenant roster includes national retailers such as Michael’s, Staples and Panera Bread.

Photo credit: Devonshire REIT

Cleveland’s Global Center for Health Innovation Earns LEED Gold

8 Nov 2014, 2:47 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Cleveland’s Global Center for Health Innovation and Convention Center

Cleveland’s $465 million Global Center for Health Innovation and Convention Center is now LEED Gold certified, Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald announced at the end of October.

The facility opened last year, ahead of schedule and slightly under budget. It earned LEED certification for green design and construction in the use of energy, lighting, water, and materials, as well as a variety of other sustainable strategies.

The features that earned Gold certification for the facility include plumbing fixtures that cut water consumption, energy savings through the extensive use of windows and reduced lighting usage, diverting more than 80% of waste to recycling centers, green cleaning practices, and a white roof that limits heat absorption.

The developers used construction materials with reduced environmental impact and recycled more than 95% of the half-million tons of debris generated during construction. The convention center was constructed below grade, with a 12.5-acre green roof. And the mall offers 275 bike racks, to encourage the use of alternate transportation.

“Environmentally sustainable projects not only promote good stewardship of our natural resources, they also help create good-paying jobs and economic growth in Northeast Ohio,” FitzGerald said in a statement. “By earning LEED Gold certification, today’s announcement recognizes the significant progress we’ve made to enact commonsense green policies in Cuyahoga County.”


Photo credit: Turner Construction

Akron Children’s Hosptial Receives $10M Donation from Kay Jewelers

1 Nov 2014, 4:07 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

On Oct. 24, Akron Children’s Hospital announced it had received a record $10 million gift from Kay Jewelers. The donation will help finance the construction of a seven-story addition to the hospital’s main downtown campus. The new tower will be named Kay Jewelers Pavilion, in recognition of the retailer’s support.

Work on the building started in May 2013. It is scheduled for completion in May 2015. According to Akron Children’s, the Kay Jewelers Pavilion will house a neonatal intensive care unit, emergency department, outpatient surgery center and labor-and-delivery unit for high-risk newborns. The new café in the building will be named the Kay Kafé.

Kay Jewelers is operated by Sterling Jewelers. The Akron-based company is a division of Signet Jewelers Ltd., one of the largest specialty retail jewelers in the U.S., U.K. and Canada. It has been a dedicated partner of Akron Children’s since 1988.

The $10 million donation will support the $60 million “Building on the Promise” capital campaign. This initiative has helped finance a major expansion of the hospital’s Akron campus. It has also supported the renovation and expansion of the Ronald McDonald House of Akron. Philip H. Maynard, chairman of the “Building on the Promise” capital campaign, said in a news release that “with the inclusion of Sterling’s generous gift, we’ve raised nearly $41 million toward our $60 million goal.”

Also, in recognition of Sterling’s commitment, the hospital said it will establish an Office of Corporate Alliances. Its mission will be to assist other northeast Ohio companies looking to make similar commitments to Akron Children’s Hospital.

“One of our pillars as a responsible business is giving back to the communities in which we work and live,” said Ed Hrabak, president of Sterling Jewelers. “Akron Children’s has an incredible record of care, and its dedication to making our community a healthier and safer place is something we support wholeheartedly. We are thrilled to introduce the Kay Jewelers Pavilion and are excited for it to open and be part of the amazing work done here beginning next spring.”

“It’s humbling to have an organization like Sterling Jewelers support Akron Children’s in such a monumental way,” added Bill Considine, president & CEO of Akron Children’s Hospital. “This gift will allow us to continue bringing the most advanced pediatric medical care to northern Ohio. We’re tremendously grateful for their generosity and support.”

Goodyear’s Headquarters in Akron Earns LEED Gold Rating

27 Oct 2014, 3:58 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Goodyear’s Global HQ

The U.S. Green Building Council recently awarded LEED Gold certification to The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.’s global headquarters building in Akron. At 639,000 square feet, it is now one of the largest LEED Gold-certified buildings in the state of Ohio.

Goodyear’s new global headquarters opened in May 2013. The seven-story building is home to nearly 2,000 employees. It is also connected to the company’s existing Innovation Center, where almost 1,000 other Goodyear employees work.

Some of the features that helped Goodyear’s building earn its LEED Gold certification include:

  • Two types of roof systems – white and vegetated – to reduce heat gain;
  • Using low-flow plumbing fixtures that allow for a water-use reduction of 42 percent;
  • 53 percent of the project’s site area is vegetated, open space that features native grasses requiring little watering or tending;
  • Almost 90 percent of the wood in the building is from sustainable sources.

According to Goodyear, the building also earned bonus points during the certification process, thanks to its use of creative design elements, such as embedding a triple-gas blend within the layers of glass walls to save energy, using 100-year-old dredged Ohio River logs, and recycling 95 percent of construction waste.

“We are proud of this designation of our new global headquarters as a LEED Gold-rated building,” Richard Kramer, Goodyear chairman & CEO, said in a statement. “This certification represents a further step in our commitment to sustainability and reinforces Goodyear’s shared value of caring for our environments and communities.”

Photo credit: www.goodyear.com

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