Archive for Wednesday, December 11, 2002

City, developer move closer to agreement

December 11, 2002

For the second time, annexation of the Jackson Heights subdivision has been tabled until a later city council meeting.

But concrete negotiations about the tract, which is north of Stone Creek subdivision, are expected in the coming weeks.

Developer Jack Willis has talked to city officials in an effort to reach agreement over how improvements would be made to a road on the north side of the development.

"I want to make sure we have an agreement," Willis said Monday. "A handshake is better than nothing."

During the Nov. 25 meeting, the council discussed the need for an entrance to the annexed land on Parallel Road.

The 195-lot development would be built northwest of Stone Creek along Parallel and County Road 5.

The current Parallel Road must be improved for safety purposes, according to Mayor John Franiuk.

"That road is just too narrow and not safe," Franiuk said.

On Monday, Willis said he'd changed his mind on some issues concerning who would pay for improving the quarter-mile of road.

Previously, he had questioned improving the road through chip-and-seal, which usually lasts between one and four years. But on Monday, Willis said that might be the route to take.

He also wasn't in favor of a benefit district, which passes some of the costs on to homeowners. But after further review, Willis decided a benefit district would not be a large financial impact on homeowners and said that could be an option.

The city has been interested in a firehouse in the development's vicinity also. Willis said he would sell a lot to the city for a reduced rate, as long as the building looks like a home and not a traditional firehouse.

Lots usually sell for $32,000, but Willis said he would sell to the city, for cost at $20,000.

The council tabled the annexation decision until Jan. 13.

"I hope you're looking at it as a two-way street and not me bullying my way down the street," Willis said.

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