Town sees opportunity to develop Knellsville

TIF district being discussed by city could finance utility extension
By 
KRISTYN HALBIG ZIEHM
Ozaukee Press staff

The Port Washington Town Board is taking a look at its master plans for development of the Knellsville area as it prepares to take ownership of two properties next to Town Hall.

That discussion was expected to begin Wednesday when the Plan Commission was to meet at 7:30 p.m.

Currently, the Knellsville area is zoned for various types of businesses typically found in a town center, Chairman Jim Melichar said, but a request by a local resident to build storage sheds across from the Town Hall is prompting the re-evaluation.

When the town created that master plan, Melichar said, it was a three-year project.

And the reason much of the plan has not come to fruition is simple, he said.

“It all depends on the city getting us water (service), and we don’t have it yet,” he said.

That could change in the near future, officials said, because the city is considering a tax incremental financing district for its north side that would extend water service to the border between the city and town.

The discussion comes as the town readies to purchase two properties next to the Town Hall on Highland Drive.

Town residents approved the purchase of the properties at 3703 and 3709 Highland Dr. for $165,000 and $80,000, respectively, at the annual meeting in April.

The purchase is expected to occur on July 17, Supr. Mike Didier, a real estate agent, said.

Didier said the property owners have agreed to replace the roof of the house at 3703 Highland Dr. — a condition of the sale — but cannot get the work done before the closing.

Board members said that’s acceptable, provided the funds for the work are set aside in escrow and they get a timeline for the work.

The town plans to continue renting that house to the current tenants, officials said, with an eye to someday sell it for redevelopment.

Resident John Taucher asked whether the town has a plan in place to manage and maintain the rental property.

That discussion will be held during the Town Board’s June meeting, Melichar said.

The house at 3709 Highland Dr. will be razed and the property used to expand the town’s recycling operation, officials said.

    

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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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