(Photo by Tim Jaynes, Staff)
SIKESTON -- The Land Clearance Redevelopment Authority has sold its first properties for redevelopment.
LCRA officials opened bids on 12 properties Nov. 7, according to David Ziegenhorn, chairman of the LCRA commission.
"The LCRA voted to accept or reject each of the bids on Nov. 13," Ziegenhorn said. "The state statute for Land Clearance Redevelopment Authorities states that even though we are a separate entity, we can not sell property without first advising and getting the consent of the City Council. They had given prior consent on this list." The LCRA also periodically updates the Council on acquisitions and properties the LCRA is working to acquire.
While not the first conveyance of property for redevelopment, this is the first major sale of property by the LCRA. "We did convey a property to Habitat for Humanity," Ziegenhorn said. "They chose a lot that we owned for their first construction."
"These properties that we we put on this request for proposals were properties that individuals had expressed an interest in," Ziegenhorn explained.
Several of these involved lots replatted to combine two 40-foot-wide lots into a single 80-foot-wide lot, "which then restricts it to one structure," according to Ziegenhorn. "That's part of the redevelopment process: making larger, more buildable lots. This also allows for offstreet parking which gets cars off of the street and out of front yards."
All of the properties sold in this group were vacant lots except for the old fire station located at 403 W. Malone and a home at 824 William which was sold to McLane Barber for $9,500.
"That was a structure we acquired from a mortgage company under foreclosure," Ziegenhorn said. "We chose to put that property up for sale instead of tearing it down and having a 40-foot lot. We got a good offer on it."
As he explained to the City Council in a recent letter, this structure is located between two properties "that are in pretty decent shape" and are not likely to be sought for acquisition by the LCRA.
Purchases were made for both residential and commercial use, Ziegenhorn said.
Rickey Anderson was the buyer for 110 Daniel with a bid of $1,000; 203 Daniel with a bid of $1,500 and 911 Lora with a bid of $1,500.
"He's a home builder," Ziegenhorn said. "Those are properties he'll be putting new homes on,"
Two 40-foot lots were combined into a single 80 foot lot for 911 Lora. "The properties on Daniel "are already larger corner lots, so they're very buildable as they are," Ziegenhorn said. "They are catercorner from each other."
The property at 106 Luther was purchased by Eric Williamson for $1,000. "Mr. Williamson is going to use that lot to expand his daycare business next door," Ziegenhorn said.
Bids from Dan Ahlfield on 217 Bowman for $4,800; 223 Bowman for $4,800; and 227 Bowman for $7,200 were all accepted.
"He bought those for a probable expansion of his business," Ziegenhorn said.
The winning bid for the only property that had competing bids, the old fire station, was $7,500 from Kyle Alcorn. Also bidding on this property was Anderson who offered $3,000.
"That is going to remain a commercial property," Ziegenhorn said. "The living quarters building on west side will be demolished then they're going to use the main building for a family workshop."
No bids were received for 215 Alabama, which is a corner lot, or 1691 W. North, which replatted from three lots into a single lot.
While there was an individual who had expressed an interest in the properties on Alabama and W. North, "he didn't see the advertisement that they were up for sale so he didn't submit a bid," Ziegenhorn said. "We tried to notify all those individuals - I just don't know what happened in that case."
The one property that was listed that did not sell was 107 Thompson as the sole bid of $650 was rejected.
"The board felt that was a very below-market offer, so they didn't accept that one," Ziegenhorn said. "That lot was originally two lots. It was replatted into an 80 (foot-wide lot). It cost it about $300 to replat those two lots. We're not trying to break even on every sale, but it has to be what we believe is a reasonable sale to accept."
The very first structure the LCRA tore down was on one of those two lots, Ziegenhorn noted.
"We made up this list from people expressing an interest in these particular properties," Ziegenhorn said. "If anybody has an interest in another LCRA property, then we sure want them to contact us because we are now in the position to start reselling them."
Ziegenhorn said that "getting some redevelopment, getting some improved properties back on the tax books helps everyone."