By Jon A. Brake
Sometimes being a commercial real estate developer is nothing but a
big headache and at other times at least you
know where to go for a remedy. Take last Tuesday night:
The Manhattan City Commission was considering a resolution to establish
a redevelopment district within the
area between Tuttle Creek Blvd and Fourth Street and between Leavenworth Street and Bluemont Ave. If
everything turned out the way City Staff had recommended, First National Development, Ltd. of Chicago, Ill and
their representative Demitrios Dellaportas would be working to develop the area as the exclusive developer.
The headache must have started for Mr. Dellaportas when he walked in
to find many business and property
owners wanting to speak at the meeting.
The headache must have continued when Ruth Schrum, who went through
this same procedure when the Town
Center Mall was developed, started to speak. Schrum said the focus was upon the city and the school districtís
welfare, and not the property owners. "Itís assumed weíre just not important, it seems," she told the
In all, five spoke against the development and one spoke in favor. That
one in favor added to the headache.
Claudine Pillsbury told the Commission that the developer was very easy to work with, and she had a contract
with them, and the City should sign the resolution.
But First National Development, Ltd. does not have a contract with anyone in Manhattan.
If Mr. Dellaporas had a headache he will be able to get relief and relief
is spelled WALGREEN. It seems a real
estate office out of Kansas City has been signing contracts on property bounded by Third and Fourth Streets and
Moro and Bluemont Ave.
On February 15, the City Staff and First National Development, Ltb.
will be back before the Commission with a
contract giving the real estate developer exclusive rights to develop the area. The City will establish a
Redevelopment District and establish a tax-increment financing (TIF) district.
If a TIF District is formed the City, County and School District will
all have to agree on a property valuation for
the area. Let's say that the area outside of the Steel and Pipe property is worth $10 million. The three will
continue to receive for the next 20 years taxes do on $10 million. If the new shopping center is valued at $60
million, taxes on the $50 million would go to pay for the purchase of the property, new public parking, water and
sewer line, etc.
At any rate, one of the first tenants in the new center might be Walgreen
and if that is the case they should know
how to help Mr. Dellaportas and his headache.