Lordstown landowner warns HomeGoods opponents of alternate plan

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Harvey Lutz hopes HomeGoods still builds a distribution center on a site that includes some of his land.

But if not, Lutz has a Plan B – and he warns it could be a bit smelly.

If HomeGoods opts not to use Lutz’s land, located off Bailey Road and Interstate 80 across from the General Motors plant, Lutz plans to turn the land into a chicken farm.

Lutz Farms, based in Warren Township, grows soybeans and corn. The parcel in Lordstown, which Lutz has owned for nearly 30 years, was optioned by HomeGoods as part of the company’s plan to invest $160 million in building a 1.2-million-square-foot distribution center on seven parcels of residential land. HomeGoods recently rescinded its zoning application after some Lordstown residents protested the use of residential property for the project.

Lutz said his Plan B is about survival.

“As a grain farmer, we’re always trying to figure out how to make a living here,” he said. “Our inputs are higher and our outputs are lower. We’re trying to diversify everything we do.”

He warned, however, that neighbors might not feel that way when the wind blows from the east.

“I thought maybe this would make them think a little bit, at least entertain the idea of TJX,” Lutz said.

Read more about the matter in Thursday's Vindicator or on Vindy.com.

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