The Baker Building that broke ground and opened last year is the first new commercial building constructed in Pemberville since 2006.
In 2005, a car wash just a few hundred yards away was permitted and construction was finished the next year. Before that, you have go back years, maybe even decades.
The 2,250 square foot Baker Building at 531 East Front Street is located just east of the railroad tracks off State Route 105 just as one is leaving town en route to Woodville. It has room for four businesses.
The building was constructed by Lance and Darla Baker, who formed L. Baker Property Holdings LLC. The building’s principal tenant is Darla Baker Insurance Agency LLC. Two other suites are 600 square feet each and the fourth suite is 350 square feet.
The building has stone exterior, similar to materials Darla liked and copied from a commercial building in Archbold constructed by Holland-based Midwest Construction Inc., the contractors for the Baker Building. Architectural design is by Feller Finch & Associates, Inc., of Maumee.
The Baker Building capped a spurt that resulted in several new businesses arriving in Pemberville last year.
In 2005, Pemberville made plans to pay $132,000 to purchase the Old Ford Garage located downtown at 118 East Front Street. Two years ago, Bob Renz purchased the building at auction for $38,000 and he and his brother Bill invested their own money towards renovation. Three new businesses located inside last year, including B&B Woodburners, owned and operated by the Renz Brothers.
“Businesses feed off businesses, so we feel the more we get the more it will help our other businesses,” Mayor James Opelt told The Press. “We’re pretty excited about having six, seven businesses coming in at one time. It’s a great thing for Pemberville.”
Genoa businesses are getting results at different levels, also.
On May 21 of last year, Latte’da opened at 6546 Main Street, Genoa. The coffee shop was started by co-owners Jenifer Delvanthal and Holly Sondereld. On the walls, artwork by high school students and local artists is displayed and ceramics by local artist Jan Pugh sit on each table.
A Genoa-based firm, Pearson & Pearson, has taken residence across the street from The Bharmacy and adjacent to Hour Glass Inn. The marketing firm, which is founded by 35-year-old former Marine Brian Pearson, markets alcoholic products.
It stated in 1998 when Pearson, then 23, came up with an idea that led to him to creating a product now known as Zippers Gelatin Shots. Some of the products the company markets today include Cream, an “alcohol-infused whipped cream” that can be added to drinks or desserts; Thatcher’s, an organic liquor that comes in a variety of flavors; and Adult Chocolate Milk, created for adults who “don’t want to grow up.”
Another Genoa company, Henry Bergman Co., received the bid to create the Pearson North Trail at the Oregon metropark. The trail will be a 1.7 mile loop along Wynn Road and Seaman Road, looping around the Johlin Cabin historical area. The total project cost is $228,000.
“Although Woodville continues to face the same economic challenges as other villages, we have been able to remain financially stable,” stated an e-mail prepared by Mayor Richard A. Harman.
“Even though some of our local merchants have had to close their doors, we have had new businesses begin. We have been fortunate to be able to meet the basic needs for our residents through our businesses,” Mayor Harman added. “The Woodville Business Association is active in combining business and community. Many of our residents volunteer their time for our parks and recreation board and tree commission.”
Woodville has been named Tree City USA for the 19th year, primarily because of the tree commission, Harman said. One of the responsibilities of the parks and rec board is to oversee the operations of the swimming pool.
The village has made improvements to the gazebo in the park, purchased benches for the downtown area, and upgraded curb ramps to handicap compliancy. The village joined the township in repairing Borcherding Road and Harman says Woodville remains committed to aiding in the installation of another tornado siren.
After an extensive evaluation of several wells, it was recommended that the village develop new wells.
“The state and production of the existing wells was instrumental in the decision to expand our number of wells,” Harman’s statement said.
The village was able to secure a 20-year, zero percent loan and partial principal forgiveness for the project from the Ohio Water Development Authority. The sewer separation project will begin early this year. The $10.2 million project is funded by the ODWA loan and $725,000 in grant funding.
“We will continue to explore grant opportunities on the state and federal levels to assist with the cost of the sewer separation project,” Harman said.