Petco, Goodwill may join LA Fitness in Cottage Grove Home Depot site redevelopmentAn LA Fitness health club would anchor the proposed redevelopment. A Goodwill thrift store and Petco are also included in the almost 68,000 square-foot redevelopment proposal.
City officials say they have eliminated a major hurdle to redevelopment of a long-vacant former Home Depot property with City Council members agreeing to pool tax increment financing dollars to help cover the cost of modifying the empty retail building.
Council members recently approved the details of a development agreement with Minnetonka-based real estate developers Stonehenge USA, contingent on approval of development plans still to come. The deal would see the city pledge $1.9 million in special property tax revenue toward the cost of purchasing and improving the building and surrounding infrastructure.
An LA Fitness health club would anchor the proposed redevelopment. A Goodwill thrift store and Petco are also included in the almost 68,000 square-foot redevelopment proposal that the city’s Planning Commission was expected to review Monday, May 21.
Included in the city’s TIF dollars investment is up to $100,000 for tenant improvements in the adjoining mall that is anchored by a Rainbow Foods grocery store.
“This has been such a long time coming … getting this thing redeveloped,” Mayor Myron Bailey said.
Under the agreement, the city will pool property tax revenue from three TIF districts to help something allowable under a state job stimulus program that expires this summer.
TIF districts use projected growth in property tax revenue from a redevelopment project to finance present-day infrastructure improvements.
Officials have stressed the financing assistance is not general property tax revenue and have said that without the city’s help, the $10.8 million redevelopment project likely would not go forward.
“I think the Home Depot would be sitting there for a long time" if the city did not step forward, said City Administrator Ryan Schroeder.
Redevelopment of the Home Depot site has been a city economic development priority since the home improvement retailer shuttered its Cottage Grove store in the summer of 2008. Since then, Home Depot has placed the building on the market for $6.5 million and rejected a $2.8 million bid offered in an online auction.
City officials had also been in negotiations with the YMCA to redevelop the building into a family fitness facility.
Terms of the purchase agreement between Stonehenge and Home Depot have not been released.