A small, vacant commercial building on Woodville Road in Northwood that was recently painted bright green, to the consternation of city officials, will have to undergo some changes to conform with the more conservative colors of the city’s central business district.
There were not enough votes on Northwood’s Architectural Review Committee, which met recently, to allow the business to remain green without adding some touches to tone down the color, according to Kimberly Vaculik, the city’s planning, zoning and economic development coordinator.
Vaculik and City Administrator Bob Anderson met last month with Josh Maluchnik, one of the owners of the business, which will be called the NutritionZone.
|Northwood Officials want this building repainted. (Press file photo by
“Josh had ideas of putting up black awnings to break up the brightness of the color of the building,” said Vaculik. “He had asked me to call an Architectural Review Committee meeting so we could officially review the color. We did that last Friday. He sent us photos of the building with the black awnings superimposed on them so we could get an idea of what it would potentially look like.”
But the committee split the vote, 2-2. Maluchnik’s changes, some felt, did not go far enough.
“Because the vote was tied, the motion [to accept the changes] failed,” said Vaculik.
She asked Maluchnik to update the drawings to include more changes in an effort to mute the green. The committee will review the changes again at a meeting on Feb. 8.
Maluchnik told The Press that he is confident the issue will be resolved.
“I was a little bit disappointed with the vote,” he said. “I thought the pictures of the black awnings broke up the color.” At the next meeting, he will bring photos with more proposed changes, including installing flower boxes, and a repaved parking lot.
“We’re going to make it look nice. I am just going to try and dress it up as much as possible, and we’ll go from there,” he said.
The building was painted bright green, he said, to match the corporate color of Herbalife, a global nutrition company that promotes nutrition, weight management, and personal care products. He and his business partners are independent distributors of Herbalife products.
The color also helps cover up imperfections of the building, which is over 40 years old.
“We decided to cover up some of the imperfections with a little bit more vibrant of a paint color,” he said.
In addition, the color draws attention to the small building.
“The 750 foot square foot building needs to stand out a little,” he said.
Vaculik said the committee will welcome any ideas Maluchnik has, such as the flower boxes.
“Basically, we want to see the green broken up more,” she said. “Maybe paint the door and trim black, put large potted plants on the ground in the corners of the building, and flower boxes underneath the windows, so the primary focus is not the bright green color of the building. I understand the use of the green, and pulling it in with the product. But it’s still a bit much.”
Councilman Dave Gallaher, who also sits on the committee, agreed.
“We’re doing our best to try and work with him. We want to help him out as much as we can and get him to tone it down a little bit and make the color less vibrant,” he said.
Officials at a Dec. 6 council meeting had initially expressed their displeasure of the color of the building, which at one time was a car lot, then a tax service. Councilman Ed Schimmel referred to the building’s color as “neon green,” and he had asked Vaculik to inform the property owner, Larry Oberheu, of Lambertville, Michigan, that the color was unacceptable for the city’s central business district.
Maluchnik said the NutritionZone is expected to open within 60 days.
He describes the business as a nutrition club that will offer healthy meal replacements and supplements, hold weight loss challenges, and nutrition classes.
He also has similar businesses in the area.
“We also have NutritionWorks in Genoa, and NutritionDecision in Perrysburg,” he said.