OMNI Properties, Inc, has filed a brief in Lucas County Common Pleas Court contending that the Sylvania Township Board of Zoning Appeals acted improperly in denying a conditional use permit to allow construction of a residential care facility at 4752 and 4828 Whiteford Rd.

Prior to its March decision, the board of zoning appeals held a lengthy meeting primarily hearing from residents of the area who complained of the commercial aspects of the proposed facility as well as concerns about increased traffic on heavily-traveled Whiteford Road.

In its filing, the developer contends that there was not sufficient evidence presented to deny the request.

The board noted in its decision that the current zoning for the site is “rural residential,” which provides for areas of relatively low-density residential development. Most of the existing use in the immediate area is low-density housing with Whiteford Elementary School at the south border of the property.

The BZA determined that the proposed two-story development by OMNI, of Beachwood, OH. “is not harmonious with the existing and intended character of the general vicinity and will change the essential character of the area.”

The project proposed 8 independent living units, 94 congregate care units, 41 assisted living units and 18 memory care units.

In his filing with the court, John McHugh, an attorney for OMNI, contends that instead of a “quasi-judicial setting the BZA invited a public grievance session.”

The brief notes that no expert testimony or evidence was submitted to the BZA by those opposing the development, and that “personal opinions of township residents, however firmly held and strenuously advanced are not a competent foundation on which to make findings of fact.”

The case has been assigned to Judge Ian English.


Written by:  Mike Jones, Public Information Officer

Date Published:  May 22, 2020

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