New bus garage coming to Harrison Hills

CADIZ – Work began this week on a new bus garage for Harrison Hills City School District. The project was the result of the district’s partnership with the village of Cadiz Community Improvement Corporation and incoming business interests investing in the county. Mike Sliva, president of the Cadiz CIC, credited MarkWest Utica and Joe Knows Energy. The companies are clearing ground for a project site across from the garage at Industrial Park Road.

“These two companies have offered help in preparing the site for construction which has reduced the total cost of the project,” Sliva said. “This cost savings will directly benefit our local school district, which allows them to continue on their path of strong fiscal control while solving a need for their transportation department. This partnership between the village and our school is a win for both parties and with the help of MarkWest Utica and Joe Knows Energy, we are creating a better community.”

Tom Noble, plant manager at MarkWest, said that the company’s contribution including laying a route from the bus site to the road proper.

“It needed to be done, and its helping the community,” he said.

Teresa Breckenridge, director of marketing and client resources at Joe Knows Energy, added that they are also assisting in the excavating work as well as handling surveying and environmental needs for Markwest.

“We decided to help the community out,” she said. “We’re trying to provide back to the community and Cadiz.”

Breckenridge said the company is investing in the area. She added that Joe Knows is also considering establishing office space in town.

“The city’s growing and we’re growing with it,” she said.

Sliva noted that installation of the footers for the garage would begin this week. The structure is expected to reach completion by late August. It will be 75 by 60 feet and be capable of holding two busses at a time for maintenance. The three-acre plot will hold the district’s fleet of 24 busses.

Melvin Allen, school board member, said the garage would hold a meeting room for drivers, storage space, and rest rooms.

He added that the district includes 20 routes. It is the fifth largest area-wide school district in the state. In addition, the district’s busses have been running 20 cents per mile cheaper than the state average on maintenance.

“We have a good crew that takes care of our mechanical needs,” he said, noting that most of the work, including heavy mechanical repair, is done in-house.

For the past two years the district has been leasing the former Ohio Department of Transportation garage on Lincoln Avenue while plans were finalized for the Industrial Park Road structure.

“This is going to be the start of something big,” said School Board Member Phil Madzia.

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