Deal for former Alick's property approved

Google Maps Buildings have since been removed from the former Alick's Home Medical property on Jackson Boulevard. 

ELKHART— The Elkhart Redevelopment Commission gave the green light Tuesday on a purchase agreement for the construction of high-end condominiums at the former Alick’s property on Jackson Boulevard subject to additional funds coming from City Council.

Portage Place Development LLC’s $100,000 bid for the site between the St. Joseph and Elkhart rivers was tentatively approved by the Elkhart Redevelopment Commission in June.

Both the commission and Portage Place Development had conditions, making the agreement tentative. Among the developers’ conditions was that the land would be construction-ready.

After the agreement was made, soil tests on the property found enough organic material underground to make it necessary to drive helical piers into the ground to stabilize any building foundation, officials said.

Because the land is not construction-ready without the piers, the $350,000 bill would fall on Elkhart taxpayers.

City Council last week voted to table the vote to appropriate $350,000 for making the property ready for construction.

If the council hasn’t appropriated up to $350,000 to support the proposed 15-unit condominium project, then the agreement, at the option of the developer, could be terminated by written notice to the city, officials at the meeting said. 

The council is expected vote on whether to approve the appropriation at its meeting Monday.

(10) comments

ConcernedCitizen

Well a 15 unit condo might be a little different from a house, not to mention someone might have learned something about building near water since the original structures were built all those years ago. It is a crock for the taxpayers to have to foot the bill for it but I fail to see why a particular age group is at fault. Everyone is on the "OK Boomer" bandwagon. Think for yourself next time.

DingFod

Further proof that Gov't officials could never run a "real" business....

Tom Shoff

Contact your council persons (your district and 3 at-large) ask them to vote no or leave it tabled until the new council and Mayor are seated. No more of our taxpayer dollars for the Alick property. Attend the council meeting Monday evening 7 pm. Hold them accountable.

59wall

I have difficulty understanding why the City of Elkhart should pay $350,000 to complete the sale of a $100,000 property. The taxpayers of the city should be screaming their heads off about this. That money could be used to fund much more needed projects.

Joe King

The 2 commercial buildings and private house that were torn down did not have helical piers. They were fine. This is absolutely ridiculous and pure greed by the developers. The land is construction ready. How they choose to build it depending on height and weight is up to the developers. Organic material? What’s next? The ground is to wet because of the river! Do they want the river moved or lowered because their basement will be deeper? They got this $800k property for $100k...surely they can pay for this construction item.

fire111

First of all Joe! Evidently this property wasn't worth anywhere near $800,000. Put out for bid and each bid was $100,000! Those helical piers are kind of a recent type of engineering tool. Been around awhile but people building small homes along the river probably couldn't afford them. Of course they were small homes. And the commercial buildings were on concrete slabs. And when they put a round about in at the intersection, it will be wonderful! And that organic material....back in 1998 I purchased this lot my house is on. Built a new home. The lot was a huge garden before I bought it. The garden and surroundings trees went in a hole. Been filling the hole about every 3 years!

fire111

Hmm... Joe! I know you are probably an expert in structural engineering! So Joe can you tell me if flat slab concrete construction on one level, exerts more pressure per square foot than say a multi-level building on it's footers?

Joe King

Fire, your clueless. Please let the adults comment here. Do you know what the city paid for these lots? Do you know what it cost to demo the buildings? Look it up yourself before you comment. Helical piers are apart of the structural integrity of the foundation. That is a construction cost. The lots are contamination proof, tested clean and are construction ready.....what they design and the size is up to the builders, and certainly not up to the taxpayers paying for it. Beyond the greed of the builders, they have yet to provide any public access to the river as instructed. The council members should vote them down just for that alone. The original requirement was to provide public access. They never did.

fire111

No Joe! I'm not clueless! Or is that knot clueless? Yore clueless. Or is that your clueless! It could be you are clueless! Or maybe you're! Yep that's it! 2016 State of the City speech included this statement....As many of you know, in 2015 the city purchased the former Alick's property for $600,000! So I guess it was $600,000! And your or (you're) burgeoning architectural engineering career, teaches you that certain means are necessary to safely disperse building weights and lbs per square foot rates! The commercial buildings were laid on concrete slab floors. That disperses much less lbs per square foot rates. And before you accuse someone of greed you might want to do a bit of investigation on names of the possible new owners. But the biggest thing about this whole situation is, the City had decided to become realtors and real estate with government involvement is Iffy at best. And no I doubt public access to an area with $300,000 -$500,000 condos would be advantageous to higher values!

correction

These Portage Place Development fells sure do sound like rookies. Here's to another long drawn out Elkhart project. Baby boomers clout

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