The Fort Atkinson City Council has unanimously approved a developer’s agreement between the City of Fort Atkinson and Garrison Holdings, LLC, offering tax increment financing (TIF) assistance for a new dental clinic.
City Manager Rebecca Houseman LeMire said that in September 2020, the city’s Economic Development Commission reviewed a request from Garrison Holdings for TIF assistance for constructing a new dental clinic in Fort Atkinson.
James and Dr. Brenda Garrison, of Garrison HDH, LLC — doing business as Highland Dental Health — are planning to build a new dental clinic at 1530 Doris Drive with an estimated construction cost of $1.175 million and are requesting TIF assistance from the city.
The property is located in Tax Increment District (TID) No. 8 on the northwest side of town, next to the Fort HealthCare Clinic on Madison Avenue.
“At that time (September 2020), the committee recommended that staff draft a developer’s agreement between the city and Garrison Holdings to support this project through TIF assistance in the amount of $66,500” LeMire informed the council last Tuesday.
Site plans for this project, she said, were approved in 2020.
“Staff recently met with James Garrison to reaffirm the site and building plans, and review a draft of the developer’s agreement,” LeMire said. “There will be some minor changes to the site plan to bring the project into compliance with the (city’s) new zoning ordinance, including some additional curbing.”
The project, she said, has been approved by the plan commission, and James Garrison has indicated that the project is moving forward with construction projected for completion by Dec. 31, 2021.
The city manager said the developer’s agreement between the city and Garrison Holdings “provides $66,500 in reimbursed construction costs for the project through TIF, provided that the assessed value of the improvements on the parcel remain at $700,000 after construction is complete. The $66,500 will be paid over several years from the increment added based on the value of the project.”
The agreement, she said, is structured with “pay-go” financing.
“That means that the only funds reimbursed to the developer are those added through the increment created by the development,” LeMire indicated. “No general property tax dollars from other property owners will be provided to the developer per this agreement.
“The agreement provides $66,500 in incentive payments to the developer, based on the increment added to the TID,” she added.
Interactive zoning mapAlso Tuesday, the council approved the scope of services with Vandewalle & Associates Inc. for creating an Interactive Zoning Map for the city at a cost not to exceed $6,325, including the 15% contingency.
Although not included in the 2021 budget, staff proposed that the project be funded partially through the following three different accounts: Engineering-Consulting, in the amount of $2,000; Economic Development-Expenses, $2,325; and Contingency Fund, $2,000.
City Zoning Administrator Brian Juarez said the zoning map currently made available to the public is one-dimensional and offers no interactive capabilities.
“I believe the creation of an interactive map would offer better utility to citizens and developers alike,” Juarez said. “This (new) map would help encourage a better understanding of the city’s zoning designations, and foster growth and redevelopment by helping developers obtain vital information more easily.”
In November of 2020, he said, the City of Fort Atkinson adopted a new zoning code to regulate and coordinate growth and use of land within the city.
“As part of the adoption of the new zoning ordinance, every parcel of land within the city was assigned a new zoning designation in accordance with the new code,” Juarez explained. “The new code and zoning designations give us a much more comprehensive ability to shape the future land uses within the city and make for a more orderly pattern of growth.”
The new zoning designations required a new set of maps and explanations to allow the new code to be understood and applied, he said.
“The city’s zoning map is currently posted on the city’s website,” Juarez noted. “It is a static document that simply shows the zoning classification.
“There are several ways to make this map more usable for the developers, the real estate industry and the general public, such as GIS mapping and interactive maps with multiple layers of information,” he added. “Layers of information which can be turned on and off at the user’s discretion and can include more detailed descriptions of zonings and their allowed uses, as well as giving the user the ability to sort based on land use can be made available.”
Ownership of the map would remain with city GIS account and be maintained by city staff.
Fat Boyz bike giveawayCouncil members also approved the special event for Fat Boyz 16th Anniversary Bike Giveaway on Saturday, June 26, and allowed expansion of the premise description of the tavern’s alcohol license to include use of the alley behind the property and parking stalls from 2 to 9 p.m.
The event is scheduled to begin at 5 p.m.; however, sales, service and alcoholic beverage consumption may begin at 2 p.m. following closure of the area.
Fort Atkinson Police also request that Fat Boyz take necessary precautions such as having an assigned employee or security person present to ensure patrons in the outside area are properly and safely contained within the designated area and do not leave the area with open intoxicants.