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Columbus firm could open downtown office

Dayton City Commission will consider a $70,000 grant to encourage a Columbus engineering firm to invest nearly $600,000 in a downtown location this week.

The grant would go to Barr Engineering Inc., doing business as Barr & Prevost, to renovate an office at 531 E. Third St., according to a copy of the commission’s Wednesday meeting agenda.

The grant would be used for building renovations, including the creation of a “state of the art testing lab,” a city manager’s report to commissioners says.

The office is expected to house 35 employees and generate $1.2 million in annual payroll, the report says. And another five employees could be brought to the site in time, city documents say.

If approved, the city’s agreement with the firm would expire March 31, 2019. By the pact’s final year, the city expects the office to have an annual payroll of more than$1.6 million. The city puts the office’s expected annual average salary at $42,800.

The firm’s seven-year lease at the Third Street site offers two five-year renewals.

The firm focuses on bridge, road, geotechnical and civil engineering projects.

A message seeking comment was left with a Barr & Prevost representative Monday.

Commission meets at 6 p.m. Wednesday at City Hall, 101 W. Third St.

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