New businesses and a UH urgent care will take over empty buildings in Streetsboro

Jeremy Brown/The Portager

Streetsboro’s Planning Commission recently green-lighted several new businesses, all of which will occupy currently vacant buildings.

Lee Hayden Auto Sales, a classic car builder, will be sited at 10000 Aurora-Hudson Road. The firm plans to use the land to store classic cars it has for sale or for which it has the option to sell on behalf of private properties, said Patrick O’Malia, Streetsboro’s economic development director. The city does not yet have a date as to when the company will open for business.

A franchise of Rita’s Italian Ice will go into a former check-cashing store at 9292 State Route 14, near the junction of state Route 43 and Route 14. Meanwhile, Another Broken Egg Cafe will occupy Streetsboro’s former IHOP at 9700 State Route 14; the restaurant will be open from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.

UH’s Urgent Care, formerly located at 9318 State Route 14 (site of the UH Streetsboro Health Center), will move across Route 14 to the former Denny’s restaurant.

UH closed its Streetsboro urgent care facility in 2020, a move hospital administrators blamed on the Covid-19 pandemic. The space is now used for occupational health services.

UH’s decision to return its urgent care services to the city places two such facilities across the street from each other. WellNow, a private urgent care chain, opened an urgent care center next to the Streetsboro Health Center in 2022.

Apart from the classic car builder, all the businesses are slated to open in two to three months, O’Malia said, though he noted that the timeline is dependent on contractors’ availability and continuing challenges in the supply chain.

O’Malia has also been trying to attract sit-down restaurants to the city, but an April 18 letter he wrote to Streetsboro City Council noted that the city’s difficulties in obtaining liquor licenses was stymieing his efforts to do so.

He said the 2006 census estimate undercounted Streetsboro’s population, but liquor licenses are allocated on that population figure, O’Malia stated.

“Just because you fall in population doesn’t mean that the state starts revoking licenses,” O’Malia informed council. “Instead, the Division of Liquor Control allows the private market to determine if there is a higher and better use of the license, and provides a process to allow someone to buy that license at a premium.”

The expense of obtaining liquor licenses through this process is off-putting to some restaurateurs, and O’Malia said he’s already had to watch a restaurant owner in the Sugar Bush Knolls-Kent area walk away because of it.

He said he is working with some potential restaurant owners who are willing to try to obtain a liquor license from elsewhere in Ohio. Once acquired, O’Malia said he could employ legal maneuvering so Streetsboro could bring that license to the city.

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Wendy DiAlesandro is a former Record Publishing Co. reporter and contributing writer for The Portager.