Major Development Project On The Table

Major development in smaller community south of the metro.

The first readings of land development ordinances that would change zoning on the property of the proposed Ridgeview development passed 6 to 2. The ordinances, if passed on final reading, will change zoning from General Commercial to Urban Residential High Density on property at 2209 First Avenue.

The Ridgeview plan involves phases of apartment buildings that will eventually total over 200 units. The building currently occupied by Hidden Treasures Furniture Outlet and the Keeler & Associates call center will be modified to keep the call center, add other office spaces for lease and serve as the clubhouse for the apartment complex.

The developer and the city have taken the initial steps to bring a request for tax increment financing back before city council for a final decision at a later date.

The TIF financing is a concern for Councilman Terry D. Tilson who voted against the ordinances along with the other Ward 2 Councilmember, Jeanie Brookhouser. TIF “drives this project, doesn’t it?” asked Tilson. “I don’t know if the project will support itself without TIF,” responded Mike Earl of the Lund Company which is assisting developer Doug Keeler.

Tilson said the plan is “not a benefit to my ward.”

Discussion then centered on the City Comprehensive Plan. City Administrator Erv Portis read from the plan that said high density residential is a usage identified for that property.

City Councilman Steve Riese said it should be noted that the 9-year-old Comprehensive Plan was “done independently” before there was any proposal made for the property.

The council did vote 8-0 to direct the preparation of resolutions on special use permit applications for the offices.

---Authority was given for the solicitation of sealed bids for the repair and/or replacement of the roof at City Hall. The roof leaks.

---The council gave a favorable recommendation to the state liquor control commission for the Class C Liquor License application of Jeffery Orr II and Heather N. Orr of Gretna dba as Main Street Bar & Grill at 226 Main.

---An event permit application was approved for Motorcycles-On-Main for Saturday, June 8th.

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