By Per Peterson
The Tracy Economic Development Authority has a lot of downtown buildings in the air, so to speak.
Plans continue to be in the works for the Dueber’s building, as well as the small building that neighbors the Post Office and was once home to the Asian Market.
The construction firm working on the Post Office ran into the Asian Market building recently, EDA Coordinator Jeff Carpenter said, causing damage to the east side (back of the building). A $3,000 settlement was reached, and the owner is working on hiring a contractor to repair the damage.
Carpenter met with the owner last Thursday. The taxes are current.
“You know, they tried to open a store there — business wasn’t very good,” he said. “She wants to get out of it but doesn’t want to give it away.”
Carpenter said the City won’t pay market price for the building, on top of losing the taxes it generates, especially considering it would face the possibility of spending $22,000 for a new roof.
“The most we would do is eat the taxes, and we would like to then take the building over from her (without buying it),” Carpenter said. “We would put a new roof on it.”
Carpenter said there is a party interested in taking over the building and putting a business there, but nothing is concrete yet.
“They need a storefront,” he said. “They don’t need foot traffic, they need a store front, which is exactly what this would be and what we need on Main Street.”
One option would be for the owner to deed the building to the City, and then have the City turn it over to the new owner after a new roof is put on it — a roof that could possibly be paid for by a loan from the EDA.
• Carpenter said there are two parties seriously looking into purchasing the Dueber’s building. One is establishing business roots in town, while the other has plans to buy a building somewhere in town, Carpenter said.
A task force that will include members of various groups in town will begin meeting soon to explore developing an industrial park and a new residential area. The task force will include members from the Planning & Zoning Commission, the city council and the Tracy Development Corporation. The group will also include Public Works Director Shane Daniels, City Administrator Kris Ambuehl, the engineering firm ISG and Carpenter.
The goal of the group would be to collaborate to target and even attain land for future development and answer questions about funding to purchase land and where that land is.
“Do you bond for it, do you use EDA money if it’s available?” Carpenter said. “The first meeting will probably be looking at all the land around town, what are the options of attaining said land and what best fits an industrial park or residential area.
The EDA is moving ahead with buying a piece of equipment so a sewer and water system can be put in on Pine Street for the Broad Acres addition. The cost was budgeted in the price of the lots.
As of today, one of the four lots — on the southwest corner — is sold, and the one on the southeast corner is spoken for.