Archive for Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Apartment complex moving forward in Edwardsville

February 14, 2012

Work is likely to begin this year on an Edwardsville development project five years in the making.

The Edwardsville City Council Monday approved resolutions to make some changes in a development agreement with Raintree 1 LLC for the 510-unit, $50 million apartment complex at 1300 S. 94th Street that the city first approved in 2007. With that, the development will move forward — the city’s planning commission was scheduled to consider the preliminary site plan for the complex Wednesday.

After it conducted a 22-minute executive session to discuss the development agreement, the council unanimously approved changes to the agreement by terminating the former agreement with Southwest Commercial Realty Inc. and approving a new agreement with Raintree 1 LLC.

Three changes were made to create the new agreement, city staff said: a requirement that phase one construction be complete within 30 months of the issuance of a building permit, a requirement that subcontractors on the project obtain their own city licenses, and a requirement stipulated by the city that the apartments offer only market-rate rents and not allow subsidized housing at least until the 10-year tax abatement period is up.

The city also is requiring that the developer provides the city with notice that finaincing is in place for the project by Aug. 1, and the building permit for phase one must be obtained by Oct. 1.

John Foudray, director of development for Neighbors Construction and a representative for Raintree 1, said the complex would include high-end materials and a resort-style pool, aiming to attract young professionals.

“I think we will set the standard for future development in Edwardsville,” he said.

Responding to questions asked by council members, he said most of the complex, about 58 percent, would be two-bedroom units. A small number of three-bedroom units would be offered, about 5 percent, and the rest of the complex would be single-bedroom units.

He said developers were still considering making the complex gated, but he didn’t think it would be.

The city had agreed to a 10-year, 100 percent property tax abatement for the project in 2007, and the developer agreed to make about $5 million in public improvements. Those include sanitary sewers to serve the complex, improvements to 94th Street, and a stormwater retention basin.

Foudray said about $491,000 in improvements have been made thus far.

The council also took a step forward with a major city project Monday, approving a resolution authorizing the issuance of general obligations bonds for improvements to Edwardsville Drive/110th Street, awarding a bid for the project and approving a contract for construction inspection and testing services.

“That road’s in horrible shape, and it’s by far the most traveled road in the city,” Webb said.

The council approved up to $1.2 million in general obligation bonds for the project. Funding for the project includes 2006 bond proceeds and allocation of county funds through the federal exchange program, but that won’t cover the project cost, which was estimated at $1,297,843, Mike Webb, city administrator, said.

“We’re going to have to do some sort of temporary financing if we’re going to finance this project,” Webb said.

The project was split into two parts: reconstruction from Kouns Lane to 800 feet north of Shelton Drive, with the option of a east-side sidewalk and ramps, and mill and overlay from the end of reconstruction to Riverview Avenue.

The firm with the lowest bid was Linaweaver Construction of Lansing, which bid $990,906 for the street reconstruction, $40,650 for the sidewalk, and a 2 percent contingency for a total construction cost of $1.05 million for part one.

For the mill and overlay, estimated costs, including a 5 percent contingency, are $477,986.

In the contract, Linaweaver was given 150 days to substantial completion.

The council also approved a contract with CFS Engineering for a fee-based contract not to exceed $50,000 to perform onsite inspection and testing during construction.

In other business, the council:

• Approved a resolution accepting the Kansas Department of Transportation’s plans for an overpass at 118th Street, as portions of the right of way are within Edwardsville’s city limits.

• Approved city bill payments totaling $183,401.

• Approved the Jan. 23 minutes.

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