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City of Green plans to buy, tear down motel with checkered past

Posted at 5:48 PM, Feb 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-28 18:49:29-05

GREEN, Ohio — A Summit County motel, known for its troubled history, could be torn down within a few months.

According to Green Mayor Gerard Neugebauer, a contract is in place for the city to buy Steve's Motel on state Route 619 for $190,000.

"We intend to purchase it and we intend to raze it as quickly as possible," Neugebauer said.

A man who told News 5 he was the co-owner of the motel said he had no comment on the possible deal.

Green officials consider the motel located on 2.2 acres to be a blighted property and the mayor referred to the small, red units available for rent as "shacks."

"You can say that maybe they are being used on an hourly basis now instead of maybe a family staying there," the mayor said.

The motel, built in 1937, has a checkered past. In 1991, a husband and wife—who owned the motel—and their daughter were shot to death. The triple murder remains unsolved.

In recent years, there has been more trouble, including 27 EMS trips to the motel since 2017.

"There's been deaths while I've been mayor there, lots of drug overdoses there," Neugebauer said.

Wendy Hilgert, who lives in a subdivision across the street from the motel, said the city's plan to purchase the property is welcomed news.

"I think it would be good for the community to get that out of there," Hilgert said. "Maybe try to put something different in there. Maybe a restaurant would be nice."

Neugebauer said interested developers might also be eyeing 11.5 acres of property next to the motel.

The mayor said he would like see a medical facility go up. He indicated there have been talks with a developer, but wouldn't say if the discussions involved a medical company.

"Let's just say that's an option that's been discussed," Neugebauer said.

The mayor indicated the area could be ripe for development because the city is also working on a $14.5 million widening project of nearby Massillon Road that will include roundabouts.

"I think it'll spur investment in our community," Neugebauer said.