City OKs $330,000 loan for marina-area condos

Financing deal for Ansay Development similar to the one Port council approved for adjacent condos
By 
KRISTYN HALBIG ZIEHM
Ozaukee Press staff

The steel structure is starting to go up for the Lake Harbor Lofts project on the former Victor’s site in Port Washington’s marina district as aldermen last week agreed to apply for a $330,000 loan to help finance Ansay Development for the project.

The city agreed to the tax incremental financing loan earlier this year to help pay for remediation and demolition on the property off Washington Street.

“It’s exciting to finally see it coming out of the ground,” Ian McCain, Ansay’s design/construction manager, said Tuesday.

Lake Harbor Lofts consists of two four-unit condominium buildings. The eight units will be about 1,700 square feet, each with a 400-square-foot garage and a private rooftop deck.

Originally envisioned as apartments, McCain said the decision was made to market the units as condos “because that’s what the market is directing us to do.”

While recent flooding in the city delayed work on the project a bit, he added that it also showed that the drainage plan for the site works.

McCain said Ansay expects to complete the project in early spring.

The development is one of several residential projects recently approved for the city’s marina district. The adjacent Lakepointe Condos will also receive a TIF loan from the city for soil work.

To finance the loan, the city is taking out a Wisconsin Trust Fund Loan. The loan is expected to be repaid in 18 years at an interest rate of 4.5%.

Increased taxes realized from the Lake Harbor Lofts project will be used to repay the loan. The developer’s agreement specifies that if the increased taxes don’t cover the debt service payments, Ansay will have to make up the difference.

That’s expected to occur for the first year or two of the project, officials have said, adding the project is expected to pay off the loan within 15 years.

Ansay won’t receive all the funds at once. The firm must provide documentation to receive the money, which will be paid in installments, City Administrator Mark Grams said.

Grams said he expects the first payment will be made about Nov. 1.

The developer’s agreement with Ansay specifies that 52% of the funding will be paid after the footings and foundation for the first building are installed with another 10% paid when the roof has been installed.

Another 31% of the funds will be paid when the footing and foundations of the second building are installed, according to the agreement, and the last 7% paid when the roof is installed on the second building.

McCain said Ansay is continuing to work on design plans for its Newport Shores project, a multi-use building at the current site of the Newport Shores restaurant and adjoining city land. The modern building, which features a bold, glassy design, would house offices, condominiums, a restaurant and pub as well as a retail store while relocating the Kiwanis shelter and fish cleaning station near the marina.

The final site plan and land exchange contract needed for the project will come to the city for consideration sometime this fall, McCain said.

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