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3/23/2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

Development corporation could help east of I-29

by Kim Fickett
Landmark reporter

A meeting involving several Platte City bankers, Platte City Mayor Dave Brooks, City Administrator Keith Moody and Kearney City Administrator Jim Eldridge, was classified as “an opportunity to start dialogue" on the possible formation of a development corporation to assist with potential development east of Interstate 29.

According to Moody, that “dialogue” would center around the potential development to land east of I-29.

“I met with Jim Eldridge and he indicated he had been a part of a development corporation being established and expressed how it had helped them being able to open up development west of I-35,” said Moody.

“It seemed like if it was working for them it could possibly work for the City of Platte City.”

Representatives from five banks, Roger Parson of Farley State Bank, Stan Palmer of Bank of Weston, Joe Carroll of Liberty Savings Bank, Rob Barman of Wells Bank, and Kelly Parkhurst of Platte Valley Bank, attended the meeting to hear what Moody and Eldridge had to say.

“In speaking with Jim (Eldridge), he said their bankers played a major role in establishing their development corporation. Bankers also have background in property assessment and evaluations,” stated Moody.

“Generally they are well connected as far as having ideas of what the property is selling for, if people are interested in selling their ground or if businesses have inquired about opening a new business.”

At last week’s meeting, Moody said the reason each banker was sitting at the table was because it takes money for this type of project and “you all have the money.”

“They have the money and can secure financing to pay for the purchase of ground and complete public improvements,” he said.

While Moody admits it would be nice to see an industrial/business park established in that area, it may be used for different businesses.

“It would be nice to see an industrial or business park established there but it may be a retail development if that’s what the market would support first,” he said.
Eventually the city realizes the area may be opened up to residential, commercial, industrial and office.

“The ground could be a location for any and all types of uses because it would be good visibility and good access to Interstates 29 and 435 and highway systems, such as 92,” stated Moody. “It holds the potential to be a good strong industrial and commercial base.”

Moody confirmed that Willis Sherry, founder of Timber Creek Sewer Company, has indicated interest in extending a sewer line to the other side of the interstate.

However, according to Moody, Timber Creek Sewer Company needs a commitment from a development before it will spend the funds to extend the line, so they will be able to recover their funds of the project.

“They’re in the same position as the City of Platte City,” said Moody. “And to date we haven’t see that type of development proposed.”

It is estimated that it will cost $350,000 for a sewer extension to the east side of I-29. Moody said the cost of the water extension to the east side of the interstate is unknown becomes it depends on the ability to cross the line at the same location as the sewer extension.

For the past six years, the City of Platte City has saved nearly $300,000 in water and sewer connection fees for future improvements.

“When a new business opens they pay an impact fee to avoid everybody paying a higher water and sewer fee for expanding our water and sewer systems,” stated Moody.

According to Moody, the development of the vacant land east of I-29 is vital to Platte City.

“We only have so much area on this side of the interstate that has the benefit associated with the visibility of I-29 and the accessibility the interstate and Highway 92 affords,” he stated.

“The area west of I-29 is zoned commercially and is systematically being developed and eventually it will all be developed. Once it’s gone, the only thing we’re left with is the area east of I-29.”

Moody continued, “We’re at the point now that’s foreseeable within the next couple of years, there won’t be a commercial lot available in Platte City. We’re at the point now that there’s not a residential lot for sale in Platte City. Everything that’s been platted has been sold and built on.”

By pursuing the sewer extension to the area of land to the east of the interstate, it opens a door of opportunities to the community.

“Every time you add an additional business you add additional job opportunities,” said Moody.

“Everyone who has chosen to live in Platte City will have more opportunities to work in Platte City. By creating that balance between home and occupational opportunities, I think you add to the quality of life.”

Moody also said the expansion of that area will help residents and current businesses in Platte City.

“Those additional businesses provide additional choices to our residents and they also compliment existing businesses in town. It helps to create a more balanced use in the community.”

 
 

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