The Carmen and Grace Vitalone Plaza, Willoughby, Ohio

The Carmen & Grace Vitalone Plaza
38250 Mentor Avenue
Willoughby, Ohio 44094

Market Research

County Demographic Profiles

Lake     Geauga    Cuyahoga    Summit

The Property is located at 38250 Mentor Avenue, a prime one acre lot located in what is known as the Gateway to Downtown Willoughby, Ohio. The land has 155 feet of frontage with private parking and direct adjacent access to a public parking lot with approximately 300 free public parking spaces.

 This ideal location in Downtown Willoughby will appeal to both employees and customers of this thriving business district as well as the diverse population of people from Lake County as well as surrounding counties, Geauga and Cuyahoga.

Based on projections by the Ohio Census Bureau, the population of Willoughby is expected to increase by 3% within the next two years.  In addition, the new Willoughby courthouse is currently being built across the street from 38250 Mentor Avenue, bringing more business from its employees and visitors as well as the expansion and redevelopment of Vine Street and Mentor Avenue.

Willoughby is the second largest city in Lake County with a population of 23,000 per 2000 census.  It is located between the largest populated city, Mentor, and the third most populated city, Eastlake. Both of these cities have grown and are still expanding in terms of business. The current occupancy rate of Downtown Willoughby is 97%.  Likewise, within the past ten years, Willoughby has developed into an economically thriving and diverse city within Lake County, contributing to Lake County's rank as 8th in retail sales ($2,002,986,000) out of 88 counties in Ohio.  According to a recent study, 40% of all food dollars is spent on meals eaten and purchased outside the home.  In fact, according to the most recently available statistics from the census, Lake County grossed over $98,742,000 in food and drink revenues in one year.  Of this, Willoughby grossed over $31,546,000 from food and drink revenues.

The growing number of new business additions to Willoughby as well as its renovations and redevelopment to existing businesses, especially the revitalization of Downtown Willoughby and the expansion of Vine Street, has attracted and brought more visitors and consumers to this area.  The more recent additions of a Lowe's Home Center, Target, Office Max, Giant Eagle, Willoughby Commons Movie Theater, BJ's Wholesale Club, Panini's Restaurant, Fifth Third Bank, Starbuck's Coffee Shop, and several major banks have further contributed to the wide demographic of this area.  Notably, Downtown Willoughby is known for its quintessential and historic looking buildings that house antique shops, coffee houses, pubs, beauty/barber shops, wine shop, and floral shops along its tree lined streets.  In fact, Downtown Willoughby has many bars and restaurants that are thriving. Visitors and consumers to the area will be able to experience a fine dining restaurant with entertainment.  Moreover, during weekends and holidays it is often difficult to make reservations or even obtain a seat at the various restaurants in Willoughby. 

  In addition, the expansion and redevelopment of Vine Street and Mentor Avenue has made access to Downtown Willoughby easier, thus attracting more consumers and visitors.  In fact, the Carmen and Grace Vitalone Plaza is located at the Gateway to Downtown Willoughby, which has over 18,780 cars passing through this busy intersection daily, making this an ideal site for business exposure.  Likewise, the new courthouse is being built across the street from, Carmen and Grace Vitalone Plaza making the location a popular and ideal spot for employees and visitors.  The abundance of business in Willoughby and the central location of the Carmen and Grace Plaza in this city creates a large and diverse customer base for the tenants to draw from. The building is designed to enhance the historic quality and architectural landscape contributing to the ongoing development of the downtown area.  The building will also house a new hair styling salon and day spa as well as contain additional leasing spaces for other lucrative business opportunities and condominiums. Some businesses have already expressed a strong interest in locating their businesses and residents in this economically thriving, central area.  Thus, the development of this new building will serve as both a site for prospective businesses as well as generate additional revenue to the city as well as existing businesses.

Finally, the construction of the building at this time will prove to be cost efficient.  Due to the present economy, construction companies have decreased the cost of their services in order to secure work.  The City of Willoughby is also offering a tax incentive to encourage the ongoing development and renovations to the area.  An eight year tax abatement is currently being offered for the construction of new buildings as well as for renovations to current businesses.   

For Additional Information,  please contact  Joseph Vitalone   440 942-0112  

by Jenny May
News Herald -Staff Writer
March 6, 2004

City council expands community reinvestment areas to create incentives

Willoughby city officials hope to attract more businesses and improvements to the city by offering more tax incentives. To motivate businesses in Willoughby to expand or others to relocate to the city, council is expanding the city's community reinvestment areas (CRAs).   A CRA is a region of the city where investors receive a tax abatement if they make an improvement or construct a new building.  Such areas are generally older city neighborhoods, said Community Development Manager Janice Lipscomb. "It's to encourage investment in older residential and commercial areas," Lipscomb said. Willoughby previously had three community reinvestment areas. They were:

* The area along Lake Shore Boulevard.

* Downtown area and industrial areas along Elm Street and Ben Hur Avenue.

* Willoughby Commons, where the new Lowe's Home Improvement Warehouse was built.

The city is expanding each of those to form two larger CRAs."We're going to expand the CRAs from the center of Willoughby out east and west," Lipscomb said. "We would like to see more improvements happening in some of our older industrial parkways." If investors construct a new building in community reinvestment areas, they will pay no new taxes on the building for five years. If investors add on or otherwise improve an existing building to meet CRA standards, they will pay no new taxes on the improvements for eight years. Downtown Willoughby was one of the city's original community reinvestment areas. 

Mayor David E. Anderson said Willoughby Commons on Euclid
Avenue is another example of a successful CRA, where several stores and restaurants including Target, Giant Eagle, Don Pablo's Mexican Kitchen and Red Robin are located. The mayor said the shopping plaza was revitalized about five years ago because it was in a CRA. "That was the biggest area (improved)," Anderson said. "That entire area sat vacant for 20 years." Anderson hopes expanding the CRAs will attract businesses that are expanding or relocating. "All the national indicators on the economy are up," the mayor said.

"As this settles into the Midwest and our businesses are in a position once again to expand and grow, we want to be in a position to encourage these businesses to expand in Willoughby and encourage businesses that are relocating that Willoughby is a great place to relocate to. I'm very pleased that we are now able to offer these types of incentives."


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