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6-18-14

City has developer interested
in eastside
Pact could trigger city selling 38 acres

by Stephanie Eaton
Landmark reporter

According to D.J. Gehrt, city administrator, because of the work of the Platte County Economic Development Council, the city has a development firm interested in developing the eastside Interstate 29 area.

Gehrt said he is hoping to bring that information to the subcommittee in the next few months.

“The proposal does not include an outright purchase offer for the city property, but it is likely that the agreement will include development conditions that trigger sale/purchase of the city property,” Gehrt later told The Landmark.

Platte City recently paid $1.3 million to acquire, through a condemnation process, more than 38 acres of land owned by the Wilson Trust east of I-29 at the Main Street exit.

The city has stated a goal to work with private entities to attract development to the 38 acres.

During Tuesday night's Platte City Economic Development Subcommittee meeting, the subcommittee unanimously supported the recommendation that would advise the Platte City Board of Aldermen to approve the annual economic development agreement with the Platte County Economic Development Council (PCEDC).

The cost of the annual contract is $2,000.

The PCEDC is a non-profit organization that has provided economic development services to Platte County local governments since 1991. The organization provides Platte City with business attraction and retention cooperates with and supports community groups, retains statistical information available for Platte City, and assists the city if an incentive issue arises.

The PCEDC retains an inventory of Platte City office, industrial and land sites that meet PCEDC minimums and includes Platte City on the Real Estate and Economic Development tour and the Executive Briefing Tour.

The PCEDC also includes Platte City in its marketing material.

“PCEDC is our primary economic development outlet,” Gehrt told the subcommittee. “They represent not just Platte City but all of Platte County in seeking new business. They have been particularly active this year, actually in the last 18 months, in assisting us with our eastside development.”

“PCEDC has been working very hard for us,” Gehrt said.

According to PCEDC official Alicia Stephens, there are several cities in Platte County that pay the $2,000 annual fee.

“Platte City, Parkville and Weston are all on the same level of membership and we do our contracts with each of them at the same time.”

Stephens said the Riverside community pays more of an annual fee than Platte City, Parkville and Weston.

“Riverside is at a higher level of membership,” Stephens said. “They have certainly more inventory as far as sites and buildings are concerned.”