Monday, April 11, 2016

What you may not know: Week of April 11

This is a bit of an unusual week for the Appleton Common Council, as our standing committees meet for one final time before (potentially) being rearranged a bit when our new council member is sworn in and a new council year begins next week.

Nonetheless, we have a busy set of agendas to consider this week. Here is what I'll be following:

City Plan Commission, Monday, 4 pm

Last week at council we referred back a proposed rezoning on Schaefer Circle that would allow an existing multifamily development to construct another apartment building on their site. Within the last two years the property has changed hands and new ownership has made significant improvements to the facilities, but the neighbors we've heard from still seem upset over the general lack of upkeep under the previous owners, impact on property values and additional traffic.

Back in March the City Plan Commission voted 5-1 to recommend this item for approval. To the best of my knowledge little has changed since then.

Municipal Services, Tuesday, 6:30 pm

Work continues on implementation of many of the objectives identified in last year's downtown parking study, and we'll take a big step forward over the next couple of weeks as council will be asked to approve a contract with TAPCO to purchase and install a Parking Access and Revenue Control System for three of the city's downtown parking ramps.

The new system will allow the city to transition to a pay-on-exit, time-based model instead of our existing pay-on-entry, flat fee existing model. It also allows for the installation of both "pay on foot" and "pay in exit lane" stations that will accept credit cards and a parking validation system. The cost of the purchase and installation of the new system is $650,000 and will be paid (to my understanding) by the Parking Utility, not general fund dollars.

Community and Economic Development, Wednesday, 5 pm

Finally, on Wednesday we'll be asked for the first time to consider a proposed purchase of a property along Edgewood Drive in the Town of Grand Chute that would then be annexed into the city of Appleton.

The property's address is 110 W. Edgewood Drive, which falls between Meade and Richmond Streets. It's currently a single-family home with an outbuilding on 7.29 acres of property but has been identified on the city's future land use map as Business/Industrial. The city's Comprehensive Plan calls for work to ensure "a continued adequate supply of industrial and commercial land to sustain new business development."

Staff is asking for approval to offer $299,900 to purchase this property, which is about $41,000 per acre. The offer includes several contingencies, including inspections and feasibility studies to ensure no pre-existing issues with or under the site and buildability of the site going forward. The money to purchase this site would come from the city's Industrial Park Land fund, and would not need to be borrowed.

I'm looking forward to a discussion this week on this property's possible future use, the price and the impact on neighboring properties.

You can see agendas for all of this week's meetings and the full schedule at the city's Legistar page.

Keeping you informed on issues that may impact you around the city is one of my primary goals as an alderman. Good governance happens in the open, and I remain committed to raising awareness on the issues coming before us.

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