A resolution turning ownership of the former McCormick Middle School property over to the village of Wellington had its first reading Nov. 7 at a council meeting.
Before the transition can take place, a new deed for the 4.7 acre property needs to be drawn up and turned over to Lorain County officials. That will follow a survey of the land by the Poggemeyer Design Group.
School treasurer Tina Gabler said the district has been unable to locate the original deed from before McCormick was built in 1867.
“We’ve had the property so long that there’s no legal description for it anymore,” she said. “There is no true deed. I’m sure there was at some point in time, but we’re talking about over 100 years ago.”
The district attempted to locate the deed through the Old Republic National Title Insurance Company in Elyria.
“My guess is because of how the block is set up, there were owners who donated or sold their property to the village to create the McCormick property,” Gabler said. “It’s not clear if the entire block was ever surveyed or if a deed was ever created.”
When all is said and done, the village will pay the Wellington Schools $10 for the property.
“That’s basically a token,” said Gabler. “In my old district, when we demolished our elementary school we did the same thing. That land was leased to both the township and the volunteer fire department. The township ended up paying $5 per year for it for the next 50 years.”
Mayor Hans Schneider said there are still no definite plans for the property.
“We still need to name a committee and move forward with it,” he said. “When that does happen, we want all voices in the community to be heard.”
Two meetings were held over the summer for residents to voice their opinions. The most popular ideas entailed a new pavilion for live musical acts and planting flowers and trees to create an environment similar to Oberlin’s Tappan Square.
Others included basketball courts, jungle gyms, and horseshoe pits.
The village initially planned to pay the McFallon Landscape Architect Firm of Strongsville $8,100 to develop the concept for the park, but ultimately decided to handle the project in-house.
Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-647-3171 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.
Jonathan Delozier | Wellington Enterprise A new deed for the old McCormick Middle School property must be drawn up before the Wellington school district can turn over ownership to the village.