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Ohio State pays Episcopal church $12.8 million to halt housing project

Ohio State pays Episcopal church $12.8 million to halt housing project

Imagine your congregation scoring millions of dollars by agreeing to do … nothing. Ohio State University has struck a deal to pay St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Columbus nearly $13 million dollars to scrap a proposed housing project. From the OSU Lantern:

A church’s plans to build a nine-story residential apartment on Woodruff Avenue were halted after Ohio State promised nearly $13 million in exchange for scrapping the project.

OSU is paying St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, located at 30 W. Woodruff Ave. across from Ramseyer Hall, more than $12.8 million to withdraw the church’s proposed project, according to an agreement released by the university in June. Other items in the agreement grant the university right of first refusal if the church, which has been at its current location for more than 80 years, decides to sell its property and permit the university to weigh in on any of the church’s future projects, OSU spokesman Gary Lewis said.

Read full story here.

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John B. Chilton

At the time of this comment I see 6 comments all outraged at the church or OSU or both. Some say the church extorted OSU.

No, the church would not accept the offer unless it was enough to compensate it for the alternative use it was planning to make of the property. It's called due diligence, not extortion.

Where's the evidence that the church came up with the apartment plan as a threat? Where's the evidence that students won't actually be better off with the dorms OSU is planning to build than with the off-campus housing the church was planning?

Some students might be adversely affected if they are required to live on campus and they would prefer not to. But it's not the church's business to run interference for those students.

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Thomas Dukes

Talk about selling your soul . . . .

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