By Andrea Cordle
Grove City Council is hoping to breathe some new life into what is locally known as The Hardware Store in the city’s Town Center.
At the June 2 meeting, council unanimously approved a measure to set aside $200,000 from the Town Center Loan Program for renovations to the building at 3989 Broadway. Matthew and Kristin Yerkes, owners of MKOB Properties, LLC, requested the loan. According to city documents, the Yerkes purchased and renovated the commercial building at 3995 Broadway and created the non-profit supportgrovecity.org, which promotes local, small business within Grove City.
The former Hardware Store is an 8,200 square foot building, appraised at $771,000. Once renovated, the Yerkes plan to lease the first floor to a restaurant and establish a group of small offices on the second floor.
The $200,000 loan has a 20-year term, with an interest rate of 3 percent. MKOB also received a $200,000 loan from Franklin County and $60,000 worth of grants from Grove City. Other funding sources were also used, totaling a $600,000 financial package.
Council approved the loan with two stipulations. One was that Matthew Yerkes maintain a life insurance policy in an amount that equals or exceeds the three loans. The other is that a lien be placed on Yerkes personal property until an occupancy permit is issued by the city.
Matthew Yerkes asked council to approve the measure as an emergency so he could begin renovations immediately. Council agreed.
“We would like to begin creating the additional jobs in Grove City that will go along with this project,” said Yerkes.
Renovations are expected to take approximately one year.
The Town Center loan program was created in 2009 to help stimulate job creation and revitalize properties in the downtown area. Loans usually range from $5,000 to $150,000.
Council president Ted Berry said this is the third loan approved that has helped renovate three buildings and create jobs.