W’bago EDA Approves DEED Demolition Loan | News, Sports, Jobs
The Winnebago Economic Development Authority (EDA) kicked off a new year with an exciting push for progress at its regular meeting scheduled for Wednesday, January 5 at 5 p.m.
The EDA has reviewed a demolition loan application from the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) written by EDA specialist Angie Stier.
The EDA sees the loan as a way to facilitate the demolition of the crumbling SuperValu building. The city hopes that the SuperValu site can be developed into an economically more profitable property for Winnebago.
“It (SuperValu) has been abandoned for over seven years, resulting in a clear need for demolition”the loan application indicates. “Having a great deal of poor visual pollution downtown, across from Highway 169, has been detrimental to the community and hampered our ability to prosper economically. “
The city estimates that the demolition itself will cost $ 69,000, with additional costs of $ 30,000 for interior demolition and $ 10,000 for restoration costs.
As such, the city is requesting $ 109,000 in funds from DEED and is funding the remainder of the project through reduction bonds.
Faribault County also pledged funds to help cover the cost of demolishing the site down to ground level.
“The county gives a portion of $ 30,000”,Stier explained. “But, only after the demolition of SuperValu.”
As a result, pending acceptance of the loan application, Winnebago and EDA anticipate an exciting and hopeful phase of development ahead. However, this assumes that they will be able to find a developer for the SuperValu site after it is demolished.
The EDA Board of Directors noted that Winnebago’s ability to repay the loan depends on its ability to locate an interested developer.
“A current business owner in the community has expressed interest in the location, but no idea has been received on paper as to his intentions,”loan application actions.
He adds, “His concept consists of an auction room at the back… Storefronts are also part of his plan.
As the loan application explains, “The goal of (EDA) is to rejuvenate Main Street, and the overwhelming presence of the SuperValu building on Main Street has significantly hampered that. “
Stier made the request “Ready to submit”,and the EDA board voted unanimously that it should send it out before the loan deadline in early February. The Winnebago EDA also addressed the following items on the agenda for its January 5 meeting:
• Approval of a commercial loan application from The Buzz Stop LLC, an emerging Winnebago company owned by EDA board members Amanda Johnson and Gary Osborn.
Johnson and Osborn plan to open The Buzz Stop, a local bar offering alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, popular bar fare, gambling and entertainment, at 29 Main Street South.
Johnson and Osborn report total project costs of $ 138,500 and request EDA funds for $ 30,000 at a three percent interest rate.
The EDA unanimously passed a motion to approve the loan request, with Johnson abstaining from the vote.
• Watched a presentation by Stier in which she detailed the achievements of EDA throughout 2021. Stier highlighted several new companies that have come to Winnebago, the outside trade grants that EDA has given, companies that have come to Winnebago. have benefited from the EDA revolving loan fund, USDA-RD the grants the city has received and the major events that the EDA has successfully conducted.
“By working together and using 16 hours per week with a dedicated board and plan, many new and exciting businesses, grants, events and programs have benefited the community. “Stier noted.
• Discussion of a Minnesota Housing Partnership (MHP) technical assistance grant that was offered to Winnebago. The grant invites city officials to participate in the MHP Housing Institute.
According to MHP, “The Housing Institute supports and strengthens the capacity of rural communities to achieve their community development goals through collaborative peer-to-peer workshops and personalized assistance. “
“It’s an 18-month process”,Stier added. “A whole group of people from the community come together to talk about housing and to be educated. “
Stier believed the process could help the city implement projects such as the development of a Housing Redevelopment Authority (HRA) or the rehabilitation of the local Patriot building.
The discussion was merely informative, but Stier urged the EDA to consider the benefits of accepting the invitation to join the Housing Institute program.