City of Eau Claire approves West Bank concept
Posted: March 14, 2008
The Eau Claire City Council this week approved a resolution that will allow the city to eliminate blighted properties in an area of downtown and potentially redevelop the region to improve the central business district.
The West Bank Redevelopment District #6, which will still have to be approved by the city's Redevelopment Authority (RDA), the plan commission and city council, is bounded by Madison Street, Oxford Avenue, Mappa Street, First Street and the west bank of the Chippewa River.
The city's housing authority determined through a zoning assessment that numerous properties fall under the blighted category. As a result, the city has an opportunity to access federal funds and create a possible Tax Incremental Finance (TIF) District to assist with the purchase and demolition of certain buildings and land within the designated 30-acre area.
"It is too preliminary to talk about how we may finance the project until the district is actually formed and the RDA, plan commission and city council approve any agreement...However, creating a TIF District is a great way to leverage funds to reinvest in downtown," said City of Eau Claire Economic Development Specialist Mike Schatz, who added, "It will probably be until late June until all of the governing bodies have a chance to discuss the issue and find possible financing options."
The Eau Claire Housing Authority study concluded that there are 25 parcels within the designated redevelopment area. The region has already been designated for future redevelopment in the city's Comprehensive Plan. TBL