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Stagnant development leaves Sandusky holding $4M bag

Jason Singer • Sep 12, 2010 at 12:41 PM

If nothing else, it looks beautiful.

Near a wooded area inside the Cold Creek Crossing housing development, white-tailed deer scamper through the long grass.

A few hundred feet away, the sounds of Cold Creek softly murmur above the late-summer breeze.

It’s hard to imagine such an idyllic place could be a problem.

But for Sandusky, Cold Creek Crossing represents $4 million to $5 million worth of problems.

In 2003, the city fronted the money for that housing development, using a $2.45 million loan to pay for public improvements.

With interest, the loan will cost about $4.1 million through 2028.

The city planned to pay for the loan by assessing people who bought the house lots. Because of a variety of circumstances, however, most of the lots never sold and only about 15 homes were actually built.

In the meantime, the developer went bankrupt.

So seven years later, the city is stuck paying off the loan and its interest, with little money from assessments coming in.

Add to that the tens of thousands of dollars in delinquent property taxes, and the development could cost Sandusky more than $5 million.

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