Owners of former Northwoods Hotel propose $4.6 million redevelopment plan for property | News

CADILLAC – A third mixed-use development similar to the Cadillac Lofts at the corner of Cass and Mitchell Streets, and the Speeds Uptown Lofts under construction a few blocks north, has been proposed for the former Northwoods Hotel at 101 E. Harris St. .

According to a communication from the Cadillac City Council included in its upcoming meeting agenda, Val Vista RV Park, LLC is redeveloping the former Northwoods Hotel and adjacent property into a residential/commercial project.

The Northwoods Hotel is over a century old and has housed a number of businesses over the years, most recently including Saturn Gems and the Escape Bar. The upper floors of the building were also used as residential space.

The proposed development is currently expected to have 23 apartments totaling 10,692 square feet and commercial/retail space totaling 1,142 square feet. Private investment is estimated at $4.6 million.

Since income from rental income is not sufficient to cover the cost of rebuilding the building, in addition to the level of operating costs, the project will only proceed if the economic development tools and incentives available for the city ​​are used, according to council documents.

“This investment for the redevelopment of this property will bring residents into the city which will create economic activity for downtown businesses, provide commercial space and employment for new businesses, provide much needed new housing and could create indirect redevelopment of adjacent properties. , providing a significant long-term return for the downtown and the community,” council documents state.

To help with the redevelopment, council will consider approving a plan to fund brownfield tax increases and a local property tax abatement under the Rehabilitation of Obsolete Property Act.

According to council documents, the brownfields plan was prepared to facilitate development by reimbursing lead and asbestos abatement, selective demolition and public infrastructure improvements along Harris Street. Eligible activity costs are estimated at $504,210.

The project also includes an OPRA tax abatement that will freeze the building’s value for local taxes for 12 years but capture state taxes to reimburse brownfield-eligible activities. The OPRA was used for the redevelopment of the Cobbs-Mitchell building and the former Speed’s Automotive building and is comparable to the Commercial Redevelopment Act and Commercial Rehabilitation Act abatements that were established and previously used on other projects in the city, council documents say.

In October 2021, when the Cadillac Lofts received a gold award in the Real Estate Redevelopment and Reuse category from the International Council for Economic Development, Cadillac City Manager Marcus Peccia mentioned the Speeds Automotive and Northwoods buildings. Hotel as examples of similar types of redevelopment projects. .

He said there was a fourth such project in the works, but added that it was not far enough along to be announced yet.

On Monday, the Board will discuss setting up brownfield public hearings, the OPRA tax abatement, and the OPRA district application for April 18.

Also on Monday, the council is due to discuss the proposed amendment to the “exhibition” conduct ordinance tabled at its last meeting.

Cadillac Director of Public Safety Adam Ottjepka described the amendment as a less harsh option for citing people who drive recklessly or recklessly.

Typically, Ottjepka said, they cite people for “reckless” driving and “reckless” driving if they are observed breaking the ordinance in at least two or three ways, such as speeding quickly, swerving fishtails and rocking a vehicle from side to side.

By having this additional option available, the city would be able to cite someone if they only violate one of the acts.

Ottjepka said the intent of the code change was to give officers the ability to issue offenders a lesser citation — one that didn’t add points to their license or increase their insurance premiums.

As to whether or not the proposed code change actually achieved that goal, however, that wasn’t immediately clear. Ottjepka said he modeled the proposal after one that was implemented in another Michigan city and was unsure whether it added points to the offender’s license or not.

If it added any points, Councilman Stephen King said he would not support passing the code change because it would duplicate a law already in place and not make the city’s citation less harsh.

King offered to file the order until an answer to this question can be obtained. The motion was approved by the board.

According to the board’s communication regarding Monday’s agenda, “an updated copy of the order is attached which specifically identifies this violation as a ground zero violation.”

City attorney Michael Homier said council doesn’t have to hold another public hearing on that ordinance and may choose to vote on Monday.

Council will also hold public hearings on Monday on the proposed capital improvement program, the sale of property on Wright Street to the Cadillac Industrial Fund and a staff recommendation to award the contract to build the Trailhead to Cadillac Commons. .

The Cadillac City Council meets at 6 p.m. Monday at the Cadillac Civic Complex, located at 200 N. Lake St.

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