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2016 a big year for construction starts
By Catherine Stortz Ripley

Chillicothe issued permits for $21.5 million in commercial construction projects during 2016, the largest dollar amount since 2012. Topping the list of permits for 2016, according to Chuck Greever, the city's code enforcement inspector, was one issued for construction of a $13.7 million elementary school building. Groundwork began last year and the new building, which will house the Chillicothe School District's preschool, kindergarten and first grade students, is expected to be completed by spring 2018. The second largest project for which a permit was issued last year was for Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott, a $4.4 million project. The hotel features 78 rooms, an indoor swimming pool and an exercise room.

 C-T Photo / Catherine Stortz Ripley

Among other commercial projects for which permits were issued in 2016 were for construction of the new Dollar General store ($600,000), renovation of an old building for Cultural Corner Art Guild and Gallery ($550,000), construction of a new steakhouse ($500,000), and construction of a new Sonic Drive-In restaurant ($275,000). Also considered as a major commercial project was one that involved repairs to the city's police department building ($158,000).

In 2015, commercial projects amounted to $4.5 million, with the largest projects being construction of a rail office for CP Rail, the Donut Palace, and SMC Electric. Construction numbers of 2014 were similar to 2015, with the major project of 2014 being construction of a warehouse for Midwest Gloves.

In 2012, permits were issued for construction of Hedrick Medical Center and office building (a project that amounted to $41 million), construction of an addition to Sonoco Plastics, and a permit issued to Chillicothe Education Foundation for construction of an athletic stadium and related buildings ($1.765 million).

Construction of residential housing picked up a little in 2016, compared to the previous year with eight new duplexes (six on North Fair Street), and two single-family dwellings for a total construction cost of $1,288 million.
Of the 67 digging permits issued, 20 were for foundation repairs, 33 were sewer and water line repair/replacements and the remainder were electrical, gas and fiber optic cable.

There were 10 demolition permits granted to private citizens in 2016. Eight were for houses, one was for a garage, and two were for commercial buildings. The two commercial buildings were those of Overton Motors (for construction of Dollar General) and for the Friendly Tavern (for construction of a steakhouse).

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