As first reported in the Toledo Blade, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) wants to spend $23 million to build a new facility in Toledo, Ohio near where the company currently produces the Jeep Wrangler. The site is the location of the former Textileather and MedCorp properties. The price of the property? $1.
Details of the deal are still being worked out. Among them is a debate in Toledo City Council over the city’s intent to use tax increment financing (TIF) for the property prior to the sale. Typically, these types of agreements allow cities to divert future tax revenue from a site toward a project that is in the public’s interest such as an economic development or public improvement project.
Jeep owners frequently customize their vehicles. The new Jeep Gladiator Top Dog Concept showed off some of those possible mods last year.
Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC
Council is scheduled to take up the issue on January 5 during their regular meeting. If the agenda item passes, the TIF will be in place for 30 years. The City is expected to use the money to recoup the $6.8 million they have put into the site.
The $23 million commitment to the over 40-acre site includes the construction of a building that is between 150,000 and 250,000 square feet. This building will be used as a vehicle customization facility, according to an agreement reached between the City of Toldeo and FCA.
That agreement also specified that the facility will employ approximately 300 workers with an estimated payroll of $12 million, however market conditions and technological advancements may change those numbers.
FCA and the City have agreed to a four-year signature-to-occupancy timeline. Should the building not be completed and permitted for occupancy by that point, a 12-month extensions can be granted. After that, should the condition continue, the City has the option to purchase the property back from FCA for $1.
As part of the agreement, two streets will be given up, Twining Street and Medcorp Drive. A parking lot will be constructed on the site.
Additional infrastructure improvements are likely and will be paid for by FCA and the City, as laid out in the contract.