community development

Architectural Board of Review Approves Four Grants

New sign approved for Laird Building

This artist’s rendering shows what the perpendicular signage w

Today, the City of Tiffin Architectural Board of Review (ABR) approved three façade grants for Downtown Tiffin buildings and a grant for a new sign to be installed at the Laird Building.

During the meeting, the board approved three projects for Façade Enhancement Grants:

  • Tony Consolo, owner of 45 S. Washington St., B.E.S.T. Taco Shop & Breakfast Spot, was approved for a $10,000 grant for roof repairs.
  • Donna Brose, owner of 135 S. Washington St., Cabin Creations, was approved for a $10,000 grant for window and masonry restoration.
  • Jay Zheng, owner of 253 S. Washington St., Hunan King, was approved for a $10,000 grant to improve the exterior façade to make it more historic.

The board also approved a $1,000 Downtown Sign Enhancement Grant requested by Don Zeis for a 19-foot-tall perpendicular sign to hang on the Laird Building, 114 S. Washington St.

Combined, these projects total more than $97,000 in investment in Downtown Tiffin.

In 2020, the ABR approved façade grants for the owners of seven building in Downtown Tiffin for a total investment of $227,188.12.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz commented: “I’m proud to be able to support these building owners in improving their properties and investing in the beautification of Downtown Tiffin.”

Since the Façade Enhancement Program’s inception in 2014, 92 projects have been approved for a total downtown investment of more than $2.6 million.

About the Façade Enhancement Program

The Façade Enhancement Program is a City of Tiffin reimbursement grant that was started in 2014 and provides a 50 percent match of funds for eligible exterior improvements on residential and commercial structures within the downtown historic district, up to $10,000. Each building is eligible to receive up to $10,000 per calendar year. For more information, visit (search “Façade Enhancement”).

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together to for “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC to act as the downtown organization and “Tiffin Tomorrow” came under the SIEDC umbrella as the “Downtown Development Committee,” which serves as the governing board of the downtown organization. In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program. For more information, click here.

Bird Scooters launches Tiffin rides next week

Bird working with local entities to provide new scooter sharing service in Tiffin

TIFFIN, OHIO – June 18, 2021 – Santa Monica, California-based Bird Rides, Inc. has announced it will begin offering its e-scooters in the City of Tiffin beginning Monday, June 21.

Bird announced in April its intention to add Tiffin to its list of cities. With the help of the newly-established Entrepreneurial Opportunity Clearinghouse through the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership, a local company who will oversee the operation was identified.

The electric scooters can be used on roads and in bike lanes and have a maximum speed of 15mph. Scooters must be parked out of the way of pedestrians and never blocking driveways. Riders are required to be 18 years-old and above to access the scooters. They are also encouraged to wear a helmet on every ride and required to obey all standard rules of the road. For more information, including an opportunity to receive a free helmet (only pay for shipping and handling), visit

Users who want to rent the scooters will need to install the Bird app, where all available scooters are displayed. Before starting, the user supplies payment information, scans the QR code on the scooter, and begins the trip. To end the trip, the user must take a photo of the parked scooter. The price of the trip is immediately withdrawn from the user’s credit card.

Bird offers the following programs that are available for all who qualify:

  • Community Pricing – Bird’s Community Pricing Program offers a 50% discount to low-income riders, Pell grant recipients, select local nonprofit and community organizations, veterans, and senior citizens. It’s designed to be the most inclusive micromobility discount program available anywhere. To sign up for the Community Pricing Program, download the Bird app, create an account, and email your proof of eligibility to
  • Free Rides for Healthcare Workers and Emergency Personnel – Bird is proud to offer free rides to healthcare workers and emergency personnel. To sign up, simply email a copy of your medical identification card along with your name and phone number to Eligible riders will receive two free 30-minute rides per day for as long as it takes to help our communities to recover from this global health crisis.

Founded in September 2017, Bird operates shared electric scooters in more than 100 cities in North America, Europe and the Middle East with 10 million rides in its first year of operation. The company was founded and is run by Travis VanderZanden, formerly an executive at Lyft and Uber. Notably it became the fastest startup to ever reach $1 billion in valuation.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz was excited about Bird’s announcement. “We’ve been working with Bird for a while, and I’m looking forward to having this fun, environmentally-friendly mobility solution in our community. They will make a great addition to the City of Tiffin.”

If a resident sees an issue with a Bird scooter or would like to contact the company, call 1 (866) 205-2442, email or use ‘Community Mode’ feature in the Bird mobile app. More information can be found at and on their blog,

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at

Tiffin Community Development Initiative encourages public to ‘Dream Big’

Project submission portal open through Nov. 12

Riverview Park in Tiffin was updated in 2019 with $120,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds.

TIFFIN, OHIO – Sept. 10, 2020 – On behalf of the City of Tiffin, Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is launching a new, innovative community development initiative. For the next two months, Tiffin area residents can submit new ideas or detailed proposals for facilities and services to improve Tiffin’s education, health and wellness, and quality of life. Community organizations, community leaders and elected officials will also be directly solicited. Projects can be submitted at until November 12. The page includes details on submission and frequently asked questions.

After project solicitation closes, TSEP will make all detailed project proposals available for review online and ask for the entire community’s feedback on the project proposals submitted for the next few weeks. The public can provide input online and/or at public hearings.

Following the public feedback period, three specialty committees or “panels” in the areas of Quality of Life, Education & Training and Health & Human Services will evaluate and classify each of the project proposals as “priority,” “recommended,” or “reviewed” based on a number of factors, including the public input.

The panel’s recommendations for prioritization will then be taken to a larger Tiffin Community Development Committee, which will finalize the classifications and the overall project list and then share those recommendations with local and state elected officials, as well as foundations and other sources of grant funding. TSEP will provide support by assisting high priority projects in obtaining funding as well as further developing project ideas into project proposals.

Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership, formerly SIEDC, has been involved with community development inside the city of Tiffin since 1990, originally with housing programs and over the last couple of years as the administrator of the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program and manager of the downtown Main Street program. The new “Dream Big Tiffin” program seeks to increase community engagement, identify and develop more and better project proposals, secure more funding, and thereby improve the quality of life in Tiffin.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz said, “I appreciate TSEP’s commitment to improving public participation to better identify and facilitate more high-impact community development projects in the City of Tiffin. This will be an exciting new step in that direction.”

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at

Terra State to offer scholarships for Short Term Certificate Programs

Information from Terra State Community College

Fremont, Ohio, August 6, 2020 – In partnership with the Ohio Department of Higher Education, Terra State Community College has announced the availability of scholarships for students enrolled in the Short Term Certification Programs.

$182,000 in scholarships are available, with students being able to receive up to $2,000 each. Current and prospective students must show financial need, including impact from COVID-19. Eligible programs include those that are Pell eligible and non-Pell eligible.

Terra State offers 25 short-term certificates that allow students to gain skills in high demand fields. Programs include credit and non-credit courses.

“All of these programs have been identified as leading to high-demand occupations in the state of Ohio,” said Beth Bower, grant writer at Terra State, “These scholarships will help employers fill the gaps in the workforce while at the same time provide students with the training they need to be successful in their chosen careers.”

Short-term certificate programs that are eligible for scholarship money include:

Credit Courses

  • Accounts Payable Manager
  • Automatic Transmission/Transaxle
  • Brakes
  • General Business
  • Diesel
  • Digital Media
  • Electrical Systems
  • Manual Drive Train and Axles
  • Manufacturing Foundation
  • Mechatronics
  • Medical Coding
  • Medical Scribe
  • Network Technician
  • PC Technician
  • Phlebotomy
  • Power and Controls
  • Precision Machinery
  • Programmable Logic Controllers
  • Steering and Suspension
  • Welding

Non-Credit Courses

  • Comp TIA
  • Dental Assistant
  • Medical Billing and Coding Online
  • Pharmacy Tech
  • STNA

For more information, please visit or contact Admissions at 419.559.2349 or at

About Terra State Community College

Terra State Community College is a two-year accredited, state-supported, residential college located in Fremont, Ohio. Terra State has a long history of service to the community and providing students with an education that is both accessible and affordable. Terra State offers twenty-two Applied Degrees and Certificates to students.

City of Tiffin applies for funds to improve Nature Trails Park

Project projected to be complete in 2021

TIFFIN, OHIO – July 7, 2020 – The City of Tiffin recently completed and submitted its application to the State of Ohio for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program, with the funds to primarily be used for improvements to Nature Trails Park. If approved, the project would include adding paved walking trails, benches, a barbecue grill and a new playground by fall of 2021. The playground that had been at the park has been removed due to disrepair.

Every two years, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development allocates up to $150,000 for the City of Tiffin for specific activities that benefit areas of low-income residents, benefit specific populations or to make improvements in areas of slum and blight. The total amount requested for this round of funding was $147,800, of which $117,800 is for improvements at Nature Trails Park, $25,000 is for grant administration costs and $5,000 is allocated for the required fair housing program.

Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership administered the program for the City of Tiffin during this round of funding, and facilitated the selection of the project with the coordination of municipal elected officials and staff, Tiffin City Council members, the Tiffin Community Development Committee and other stakeholders. Seneca County has its own allocation amount, separate from the City of Tiffin, which is administered by Seneca Regional Planning Commission.

City of Tiffin Engineer’s Office provided the preliminary design services and will provide additional engineering services throughout the project that will save significant costs and allow more funds to be used for construction.

The application was submitted June 17, 2020, to the State of Ohio Office of Community Development, following authorization from Tiffin City Council on June 15, 2020.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz commented, “Nature Trails is a great asset to citizens it serves, but this funding will provide for a much needed update at the park. I’m grateful that we have the opportunity to invest in our community without having to put the expense on the city’s budget.”

Dedication of Tiffin’s spectacular urban park as ‘National Corner’

Press Release submitted by National Machinery LLC

Downtown Tiffin, Ohio, has made a major splash in its continuing renaissance.  Thanks to the philanthropy and community activism of National Machinery LLC, its foundation, and its founding family, a stunning downtown park with a creative splash pad area has opened to the public. Located just one block from the main intersection of downtown Tiffin, the 2.5 acre East Green complex is the vision of Andrew Kalnow, the CEO and major owner of National Machinery, a 145-year old manufacturing firm that is a global leader in cold forming equipment and technology.

Last year saw the completion of the Frost-Kalnow Amphitheater on the East Green, a uniquely designed outdoor performance venue that sports curvilinear tiers, perimeter walls, and open green space.  A summer concert series has been organized to stage at the amphitheater top quality music performances by musicians from the greater region.  (See the website for more information and photos of the amphitheater:

On August 19 the companion urban park to the amphitheater was dedicated as “National Corner.”  The park boasts the same curvilinear architectural style as the amphitheater, as well as a smaller pavilion for public restrooms that matches the large stage pavilion at the adjacent amphitheater.  A high tech splash pad is the main feature of the park with a repertoire of several programs and a colored light fountain display at night. The splash pad area even has its own mini amphitheater hugging the aquatic area. The park is richly landscaped with various flower beds spread along the curvilinear perimeter wall, as well as a secluded garden with waterfall to be discovered and enjoyed.

Throughout the day over 1200 people visited the East Green to partake in the ongoing events including the “National Corner” dedication and celebration, and music fest at the Frost-Kalnow Amphitheater.  The East Green complex that includes both the new National Corner urban park and the amphitheater is owned and overseen by the East Green Foundation.

For further information, contact:

Nichole Schalk-Tiell

Senior Marketing Specialist

National Machinery LLC