Yellow house donation opens opportunities | News, Sports, Jobs

Yellow house donation opens opportunities | News, Sports, Jobs

We are thrilled to see that Jason Altobelli, who owned the oldest house in Howland that is slated for demolition, stepped up efforts to save the building by agreeing to turn over ownership to the Howland Historical Society.

Altobelli told our newspaper he wanted to do this — at a price of just $1 — because he believes it will give the historical society direct involvement in discussions with the Ohio Department of Transportation about efforts to save the structure by moving it to a new location in the township.

This historical home has been the focus of much debate over the past year because it stands on property located next to the state Route 82 ramp where, in 2023, ODOT plans to expand and redevelop roadways with a new, safer traffic pattern known as a diverging diamond.

Under the agreement struck this month, the historical society will take ownership of the building, but Altobelli will retain ownership of the property on which it sits.

“When I realized their situation, I wanted to be part of the solution to help benefit the community. There is so much outpouring from the community for this house. This is the best positive outcome that everyone involved could have,” Altobelli said.


Now, though, the clock is ticking on the home’s future. In order to save it, the structure will need to be relocated. Right now, the society is planning to find a way to move the building next spring to a property near Howland Middle School.

The relocation will involve quite of bit of coordination with ODOT in order to maneuver it northward, past the state Route 82 bridge. Because the house is too high to fit under the bridge, it could be done by transporting the structure up and then down the state Route 82 ramps at state Route 46, temporarily blocking traffic. Or it could mean removing the home’s roof to allow it to fit under the Route 82 bridge.

Either way, the project won’t be inexpensive, and the Howland Historical Society is limited in assets and available funds.

The group has been in talks with a local house-moving company. The cost of relocation is estimated at $25,000, plus another $5,000 to move utility lines. A surveyor is examining the proposed property to recommend the best location for the foundation.

For now, the organization is launching fundraisers, including an online GoFundMe account. Information can be found with an online search for “GoFundMe Yellow House.” More info is available on the Howland Historical Society and the Everything Howland Facebook pages.

We encourage interest and we encourage donations.

The preservation of history is critical for our future. This project provides a first-hand, grassroots opportunity to help.

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