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Boston Heights Overlook

This is a publication of Boston Heights Overlook.
Not an official public document by, of or for the Village of Boston Heights OH.

Army Reserve Center
Planned for Boston Heights
to be in Twinsburg

The US Army plan: an Army Reserve Center on 22 acres at Olde 8 and Hines Hill Roads, now planned for Chamberlin Road in Twinsburg.

Army Base Proposed Location Image
Links:   Notices   Proposal   Village Response   Citizens Rally  
             In the News   FAQ   PDF Reader  
Updated: 1 February 2008

News & Public Notices


News: "Army Reserve nearly ready to open Twinsburg training center, shop", Cleveland Plain Dealer, 1 Feb 2008.

For the new Twinsburg site (now under construction, June 2006):
Click here for the Environmental Assessment and Findings document PDF; caution: it's huge!
It is possible that this same document may be found at the Twinsburg Public Library.

News: Army buys Twinsburg land, "Army to build training center in Twinsburg", Crains Cleveland Business, 12 Jul 2005.
News: "Reserve has its site, but where is it anyway?", Cleveland Plain Dealer, 13 Jan 2005.
News: Army closer to Twinsburg site, read Hudson Hub-Times article, 15 Sep 2004

Some resistance, and support, in Twinsburg; see: Cleveland Plain Dealer, 4 Feb 2004, Akron Beacon Journal, 3 Feb 2004, Cleveland Plain Dealer, 22 Jan 2004 and Cleveland Plain Dealer, 6 Nov 2003.
Click here for Mayor McFall's letter to the community, confirming the move.
This news confirmed by the Akron Beacon Journal on 23 August 2003, and Cleveland Plain Dealer on 6 September 2003:
At the Village Council Meeting of 13 August 2003, Mayor McFall reported that, according to Congressman LaTourette's office, the Army Center is now planned for a site in Twinsburg, across from the Chrysler plant on State Route 82.

At the Village Council Meeting of 12 February 2003 Mayor McFall re-iterated his communication with Rep. Steve LaTourette's office: The Army is reported to be no longer planning to build its Center in Boston Heights, and a news conference would soon be arranged to make that announcement - "within weeks".

On 26 November 2002, the US Government acquired the land slated for the Army Reserve Center, apparently without consulting the Village Planning Commission as is usual for lot splits. The new parcel is #1300941.

Mayor McFall responds: "Boston Heights' side of the story", a letter to the Akron Beacon Journal, 25 Nov 2002. This is in response to Major Michael Kiene's "Army Reserve Center would benefit area" letter to the Akron Beacon Journal, 06 Nov 2002, wherein he offers a view on the origins of the local opposition to the center.

More on the land swap proposed for the Army Reserve Center; see
"Army Reserve Considers Coit Road Site" Plain Dealer 9 Nov 2002 and "Boston Heights might dodge Army Reserve Center" Akron Beacon Journal, 8 Nov 2002.

Congressman LaTourette moves to relocate or block the Army Center; see "New site is sought for Army Reserve" Akron Beacon Journal, 19 Oct 2002 and "LaTourette peddles land swap to help Boston Heights" Cleveland Plain Dealer, 24 Oct 2002.

Courtesy of Major Michael Kiene, here is the slide presentation from the Town Hall Meeting on 03 October 2002.

The Boston Heights Village Council, at its 09 October meeting, passed Resolution 22-2002 opposing the location of the Army Reserve Center in the village.

Here are some interesting (sometimes bizarre) perspectives in letters to the Akron Beacon Journal:
"Boston Heights' bad karma" (21-Oct); "Weekend Warriors" (16-Oct); "Good neighbors" (10-Oct); "NIMBY" (29-Sep); "Suddenly, residents are worried about nature" (25-Sep).

On 30 August 2002, local newspapers carried a 2nd Public Notice on the proposed Army Reserve Center, announcing the finalization of the Environmental Assessment - Finding of No Significant Impact. For summary transcriptions:
Click here for the FNSI summary PDF; and click here for the public-comment and response summary PDF.
The complete final document, with public comments, is available at the Nordonia Public Library (not online).

On 03 July 2002, local newspapers carried a legal notice that gave the first word of the proposed Army Reserve Center. This started a 30-day period for public comment. Apparently the Village government did not receive any notice before this.
(Note: this was disputed by the Army Reserve; at the 03 October Town Hall Meeting, Major Kiene noted that the Army had contacted the Boston Height Village Engineer in February 2002, expressing interest in the site and asking for zoning and utility information. The Village response is that this sort of casual inquiry is not notification, and that the Village Planning Commission should have been consulted.)

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Proposed Army Center OBSOLETE!

Army Center Location The Center is to be built on 22 acres at Olde 8 Rd., just south of E. Hines Hill Rd.
The complete proposal, in the form of a draft Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact, is found at, but since the web link seems to lead to the 88th's splash page, try these direct links:

Figures-Site Location Map
Draft Final-Finding of no significant impact
Final Report-Environmental Baseline Survey

Here is the Army's $1.2M Land Acquisition Budget for this project. PDF

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Village Response

The Boston Heights Village Council, at its 09 October meeting, passed Resolution 22-2002 opposing the location of the Army Reserve Center in the village.

On 3 October 2002, the Village and the Army hosted another Town Hall Meeting to allow the Army Reserve to explain the proposed Center project. Here is the Army Press Release. Once again, about 150-200 people attended. Staffers from the offices of Congressman Steve LaTourette and Senator DeWine were on hand.
Representatives from the Army Corps of Engineers and the Army Reserve came to make their case, principally through an able and amiable presentation by Major Michael Kiene of the the Office of the Chief of the Army Reserve. This was answered by a trio of Village councilors, Dr. Mike Cheung, Ms. Terri Slane, and Mr. Bill Goncy, who presented the objections of the citizens and the Village. A phalanx of unhappy citizens then made their own objections known.
Click here for Major Kiene's slide presentation.
New developments included objections to the location of the Center in Boston Heights; click to read: John Debo, head of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park (letter) PDF, Senator Mike DeWine (letter), and the Summit County Council (resolution) PDF.
A number of people, including Mr. John Codrea and Major Kiene, reiterated the idea of locating the proposed center on the former Coliseum site, now a portion of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. While not an issue at the meeting, it should be noted that this site at Rt 303 & Rt 271 is south of the Turnpike, and so outside the Army's geographic criterion for this project.

Previously, on the evening of 5 September 2002, the Village held a Special Town Hall Public Meeting, to which all residents were invited, along with Rep. LaTourette, Sen. DeWine and Sen. Voinovich. Those worthies each sent a staff member; media reporters and cameras were also present. About 150-200 people attended, and 21 spoke, all in opposition to the center. Included in that group were four Village Councilors (Mr. Goncy, Ms. Slane, Dr. Cheung, Mr. Palumbo), as well as Mary Ann Day, Trustee of adjacent Northfield Center Township.
Dino DiSanto, representing Rep. LaTourette, noted that the Army had already purchased the property, on or around 29 August -- earlier than expected. (Note: this was contradicted in the meeting of 03 October; the Army's purchase offer was accepted but had not yet closed as of that date. It does seem to have been completed as of 26 November.) He also conveyed this message from the Congressman:
He is working to arrange a public meeting with the Army Reserve and Army Corps of Engineers, so that they can explain the proposed base and their view of the impacts on the village. If after that meeting, Village officials and the community are still opposed, he will attempt to influence the Army to swap the land for a more suitable site elsewhere. Barring that, he will attempt to block the $24M fund allocation required to build the base (there is of course no guarantee of success in that effort).

Many Village residents oppose the proposed center, mostly due to quality-of-life issues like vastly increased weekend traffic, conflict with adjacent residential areas, and proximity to the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Other residents do not oppose the center, citing support for the U.S. armed forces and its needs. A group of "Concerned Citizens of Boston Heights" has distributed a letter of opposition and, more recently, a circular of opposition, citing grounds for opposing the center.

The Village government's response to this plan has been generally negative, mostly due to impact of heavy trucks on the roads and lack of income from property and income taxes. While these problems would apply to any location, the burden is seen to be too large in proportion to the size of the village (400 families in 7 sq.miles). Apparently there was no consulation until a meeting on 13 August between Mayor McFall et al. and representatives of the U.S.Army.
A report on this 13 August meeting was given at the August meeting of the Village Council, in conjunction with an extensive discussion of the project in general.
Mayor McFall provided the Village's initial comments in this letter to the Army.
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Community Rallies to Oppose Army Base - 25 August 2002
A number of Boston Heights citizens turned out on a recent Sunday morning for a rally opposing the proposed Army Center. Held at the homes across the street from the planned site, the crowd made it clear that they did not welcome the base. The rally was covered by the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Akron Beacon Journal, and TV WKYC-3 & Fox/WJW-8.
Click here for the letter of opposition circulated at the rally.
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In the News
Several articles & editorials have appeared in local media, some of which are available online:
"Army Reserve nearly ready to open Twinsburg training center, shop", Cleveland Plain Dealer, 1 Feb 2008.
"Army to build training center in Twinsburg", Crains Cleveland Business, 12 Jul 2005.
"Reserve has its site, but where is it anyway?", Cleveland Plain Dealer, 13 Jan 2005.
"The Army Reserve is one step closer", Hudson Hub-Times article, 15 Sep 2004
"Twinsburg crowd backs Army Reserve training center", Cleveland Plain Dealer, 4 Feb 2004.
"Reserve site encounters resistance - Some object to Army's choice in Twinsburg", Akron Beacon Journal, 3 Feb 2004.
"Twinsburg still may lose taxes on site - Owner to donate land if Army doesn’t take it", Cleveland Plain Dealer, 22 Jan 2004.
"Army Reserve Center May Face Battle" (in Twinsburg), Cleveland Plain Dealer, 6 Nov 2003.
"Army Reserve Picks New Site - Twinsburg ... not Boston Hts.", Cleveland Plain Dealer, 6 Sep 2003.
"Military to build in Twinsburg; Army Reserve Center forgoes Boston Heights", Akron Beacon Journal article, 23 Aug 2003.
"Army Reserve Considers Coit Road Site", Cleveland Plain Dealer article, 9 Nov 2002.
"Boston Heights might dodge Army Reserve Center", Akron Beacon Journal article, 8 Nov 2002.
"LaTourette peddles land swap to help Boston Heights", Cleveland Plain Dealer article, 24 Oct 2002.
"New site is sought for Army Reserve", Akron Beacon Journal article, 19 Oct 2002.
WKSU-FM audio article, 16 Oct 2002. PDF
"Army proposes facility in Stark" (second facility), Akron Beacon Journal article, 11 Oct 2002.
"Army vs. Boston Heights - The Cuyahoga National Park sides with the civilians", Akron Beacon Journal editorial, 10 Oct 2002.
"Cuyahoga park joins village's fight", Akron Beacon Journal article, 4 Oct 2002.
"Park fights Army plan for Boston Hts. Reserve center", Cleveland Plain Dealer article, 5 October 2002.
"Army Reserve, center opponents meet" , Cleveland Plain Dealer article, 4 October 2002.
"Park joins with villagers in opposing planned military base", WKYC TV-3, 4 Oct 2002.
"Boston Heights: Reserve Center is topic", Cleveland Plain Dealer article, 3 October 2002.
"Army Reserve to make its case", Akron Beacon Journal article, 2 Oct 2002.
"Reserve center project marches on", Cleveland Plain Dealer article, 7 Sep 2002.
"Land sold to military", Akron Beacon Journal article, 6 Sep 2002.
"Reserve Center foes get word to Congress", Cleveland Plain Dealer article, 6 Sep 2002.
"NE Ohio residents oppose U.S. Army Reserve center plans", Newark Advocate article, 26 Aug 2002.
"Residents tell Army: Stay away", Akron Beacon Journal article, 26 Aug 2002.
"Village neighbors take on Army Reserve", Cleveland Plain Dealer article, 26 Aug 2002.
Fox-8 TV article, 26 Aug 2002. (link now offline)
WKYC TV-3, 21 Aug 2002. (link now offline)
"Boston Heights can't do much to stop Army invasion", Cleveland Plain Dealer article, 16 Aug 2002.
"Boston Heights scouted by Army", Akron Beacon Journal article, 22 Jul 2002.
"Army plans to close Cuyahoga centers, move to Boston Hts.", Cleveland Plain Dealer article, 13 Jul 2002.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Have another question, or a better answer? Contact Us!

Q: What is the Army's proposal, exactly?
A: OBSOLETE It's best explained by the Army's legal notice and the complete set of documents linked from it.
Briefly, the Army plans to consolidate several equipment and training centers in the Akron-Cleveland area into one new center in Boston Heights. The chosen site is the part of the wooded lot between Olde 8 Rd. and the driving range, nearest the turnpike. This is about 22 acres.

Q: What about that rumor that the Army was going to buy the Papes "Sheep Farm" too?
A: Debunked -- the Army denied any such plan during its meeting with the Village on 13 August. Also, see this correspondence with the Army Corps of Engineers.

Q: How many people will use the planned center?
A: OBSOLETE There will be a full time Mon-Fri staff of about 65 people; during three weekends each month, from 200 to 500 reservists will report to the center for training. They will not be sleeping over in the facility, but some make stay in local hotels Sat-Sun. The center will serve about 1079 people total.

Q: Does the Village zoning allow this center?
A: OBSOLETE First and most importantly, the Army has informed the Village that, while they will make a reasonable effort to accommodate the community, they are not subject to the Village's Zoning Plan.
The parcel is currently zoned OP Office/Professional. The office portion of the proposed use and preliminary site plan might be conformant with the Village OP zoning rules. The planned material storage/shipping and truck maintenance, and perhaps much of the training, probably is not.

Q: Does the Army expect to make use of the Village police, fire and EMS services?
A: OBSOLETE Yes, says the Army's Environmental Assessment document. The Village raised the question of fee-for-service in lieu of taxes, but this is reported to be unresolved.

Q: Will the center employees or reservists pay income tax to the Village?
A: OBSOLETE Active and Reserve members of the U.S. military do not pay municipal income tax, according to the Ohio Revised Code 718.01(F)(1). There will be perhaps 30 civilian employees at the center who will be subject to the Village income tax of 1.5%.

Q: Will the center pay property taxes to the Village or Hudson School District?
A: No, as property of the Federal Government, the center will pay no property taxes. The previous owner paid about $10,171 per year on the undeveloped 22 acres (pro rata), of which less than $1000 went to the Village.

Q: What about "Payment in Lieu of Taxes" (aka PILT)?
A: PILT is a payment sometimes made by the Federal Government to local governments, to account for some of the direct costs of supporting their property and installations. Clerk-Treasurer Zeman advises us that the Village currently receives $76.12 per year as PILT for the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. That's for over 1500 acres, many structures, and miles of roads. Not much help there!

Q: Who owns this land right now?
A: OBSOLETE At the Town Hall Meeting of 5 Sep 2002, the village was informed by Rep. LaTourette's office that the U.S. Army had purchased the property on or about 29 August. This was contradicted in the meeting of 03 October; the Army's purchase offer was accepted in August 2002 in order to use the funds in Fiscal Year 2002, but the purchase had not yet closed as of 03 October. Note: the purchase did close 26 November 2002.
The previous owner was a limited partnership, whose legal agent is Mark T. Coffin:
Second Green LP   3201 Enterprise Parkway #140   Beachwood, OH 44122
The single general partner for the L.P. is Fairway Properties, Inc., same agent but at #220 of that same address. That's also the legal agent for Second Fairway LP, which owns the adjacent driving range "The Range", as well as one of its four general partners.
The entire 32 acres was bought from Hudson Park Estates Inc. & Woodale Estates Inc. on 14 April 2000, for $639,987. HPE/WE is the owner of the adjacent golf course, "Boston Hills Country Club", and uses the same Pepper Pike address as Boston Hills Leasing, one of the other partners in the driving range. As of 2000, the president of Hudson Park Estates Inc. was Arthur W. Treuhaft.

Q: Does the site have water and sanitary sewer?
A: OBSOLETE Nearly. Water and sewer mains run along Hine Hills Road, east-west. Since the Army is not planning to buy the land at the corner of Olde 8 and Hines Hill, the lines will have to be extended south to their site, just 800 feet or less. It was pointed out at the 04 October meeting that the sewer line is a forced main, and so that the Army will need lift/pump stations -- and backup power for the village's unreliable electrical supply.

Q: When is the center going to be built?
A: OBSOLETE According to the Plain Dealer, 7-Sep-2002: "The Army will begin designing the facility in November and award a construction contract in December 2003, said project manager Joseph Gates of the Army Corps of Engineers. Construction will begin in 2004."

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