CDA shows no interest in creating another TIF

Green Bay Road retail market seen as strong

June 26, 2008

Development along Green Bay Road will have to continue without the creation of a tax-incremental financing district.

The Brown Deer Community Development Authority on June 18 voted against creating a TIF at the request of Weas Development.

Weas Development several years ago purchased the former Hearthside Rehabilitation site on the northwest corner of Green Bay Road and Schroeder Drive, and asked if the village would consider creating a TIF district to help redevelop the land. The Hearthside center and an adjacent house were torn down last year.

Earlier in the month the developer presented a conceptual plan to the Plan Commission for a hotel, retail building and convenience store/gas station/car wash. The commission rejected the concept, citing its density, lack of green space and location of the convenience store in its discussion.

Village Manager Russell Van Gompel said he had some hesitation about the creation of an additional TIF district. The village has three open TIFs, one on Bradley Road, one on Brown Deer Road and a third that encompasses the Original Village.

“I see the Green Bay Road corridor as something different,” Van Gompel said. “All indications are the retail market on Green Bay is very strong and not depressed at all.”

TIF, is a mechanism that allows municipalities to borrow money to fund infrastructure improvements for an area that otherwise would be difficult to develop or redevelop. The increased property tax revenue from the improved land is then diverted from the tax roll to pay off the loan.

Van Gompel noted that Culver’s restaurant, the Holiday Inn Express and Candlewood Suites, which are directly across the street from the Weas-owned site, developed without the type of public assistance.

CDA member Scott Fleming said he was concerned about the impact of taking another part of the village off the tax rolls.

Trustee Tim Schilz pointed out that ongoing development in the area could eventually benefit the Weas property.

“There should be a positive impact on that corner from the Wheaton and YMCA development,” Schilz said.

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare is building a medical office building that will be attached to the Rite Hite YMCA. The YMCA also is being renovated.

Mary Buckley can be reached at (262) 446-6615.

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