Archive for Thursday, May 25, 2006

Developer awaits answer on drainage

May 25, 2006

Work continues on Carriage Hills Plaza. The shopping center near Holiday Inn Express, 120 Express Drive, has announced Arby's and Popeye's Chicken as its initial tenants. A principal with one of the co-developers of the center told the Lansing City Council last week that he is about to sign an agreement with another fast-food restaurant to locate in the center.

Work continues on Carriage Hills Plaza. The shopping center near Holiday Inn Express, 120 Express Drive, has announced Arby's and Popeye's Chicken as its initial tenants. A principal with one of the co-developers of the center told the Lansing City Council last week that he is about to sign an agreement with another fast-food restaurant to locate in the center.

The city of Lansing may act as the middleman to save developers from having to pay an unforeseen expense for a drainage project at the Carriage Hills Plaza.

John Young, the city's public works director, said Tuesday the city and Kansas Department of Transportation would continue to discuss whether KDOT would reimburse the city for boring underneath Main Street and running a drainage pipe under Main Street from the new shopping center to tie into a public storm sewer.

The City Council, at its meeting Thursday, May 18, tabled discussion of a request by Fishman & Co, for $60,000 to complete the drainage work. Fishman & Co. and ARO Real Estate are partners in the Carriage Hills project.

Instead, the council directed the city to inquire whether KDOT would be willing to reimburse the city for the work at the behest of Michael Fishman, president of Fishman & Co., a partner in the Carriage Hills project.

Fishman told council members the project originally was supposed to be paid for and completed by the Kansas Department of Transportation as part of the Main Street System Enhancement construction.

"The problem is one of timing," Fishman told council members. "We're ready to finish building our project now. KDOT's not going (to start on that part of the Main Street project) until sometime in calendar year '07. We can't wait for them. We've got to build that pipe under now."

Fishman said KDOT officials were adamant they would not reimburse developers for doing the work themselves. Reimbursing the city, Fishman said he was told, may be a different matter with the state transportation officials.

"If KDOT is inclined to refund to the city the city's expense of $60,000, it's a win-win for both of us," Fishman said.

Young said this week that he had made an inquiry to KDOT about the city receiving reimbursement for the work, but more discussions were necessary.

City Administrator Mike Smith had maintained the city's development agreement with Fishman & Co. and ARO Real Estate, co-developers of the restaurant and retail site near the Holiday Inn Express, 120 Express Drive, was more than fair.

In other action Thursday, the council:

¢ Approved minutes from its April 27 special meeting

¢ Approved minutes from its May 4 meeting

¢ Heard an update from Laura Phillippi, site supervisor, on Lansing Historical Museum. She said as many people had visited the museum in its first three months of operation in 2006 as had visited in the entire year of 2005. The city took over operations of the museum in January and extended the hours the museum is open.

¢ Approved appointment of David Andrews and the reappointment of Velora Riese to the Lansing Community Library Board

¢ Approved a conditional use permit for a ceramics shop at 14004 Robin Road. Joyce Basso previously operated the shop under a conditional use permit granted by Leavenworth County, but her house was part of annexation into the city in late 2004.

¢ Approved the appointment of Mike Howell to the Board of Zoning Appeals

¢ Approved a resolution pertaining to the East Eisenhower Road improvement project

¢ Approved an agreement with Unified School District 469 setting up a benefit district and outlining the 50-50 split on costs associated with extending Bittersweet Street from Brook Meadow Road to West Mary Street

¢ Heard from City Administrator Mike Smith that technicians with Time-Warner Cable had been in town to work on problems associated with emergency announcements, including storm warnings and prison breaks, broadcast over the cable system.

Smith said the problems had been occurring for at least the past five years, and appear to have been solved. A test of the system earlier this month by Police Chief Steve Wayman yielded an audible, understandable message, Smith said.

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