City of West Concord

A Proud Heritage, A Bright Future

2nd Community Service Results


In the Community Survey that the West Concord EDA recently reviewed there were several comments about the make up of the EDA membership.  Some of the concern was that members from outside the city limits were on the EDA. I would like to devote this article to explaining how the members were selected and give some background on how we got to the point of creating a new housing development.

The original study group, before the EDA, consisted of eleven (11) members. As we reviewed the growth of West Concord, and how to get something started in terms of development, we looked at the Minnesota Statutes, and determined that an Economic Development Authority was the way to go.  The Statutes specify the number on the EDA as being three, five, or seven members. We selected a seven member EDA to have broader diversity and a greater breadth of knowledge and ideas. Two of the members must be members of the City Council.  The rest are made up from the general population.

This is the group that is looking at creating a housing development.

When the EDA started in 2004-2005 it looked at the available lots in the city of West Concord.  At that time we identified twenty (20) possible lots.  The members then contacted the owners and found that eighteen (18) owners would not consider selling their  lots.  Two indicated they would sell if the right deal came along,  and now a third person has put their lot up for sale this summer.

Since the EDA found that there were few lots available in West Concord for new housing development, it started looking for land in the city limits that could be developed.  We started looking in the southwest corner where the latest development had taken place (Flicek and Sunset Additions). This proved to be promising because the owner of most of the land also wanted to see the city expand. However, there has been several delays in getting this development going because it involved working with six property owners and a thirty (30) foot strip of "NO MAN'S LAND", and developing a required sediment pond.

Previously the EDA had looked at getting Southeast Minnesota Multi-County Housing Redevelopment Authority to do a housing development. They were in the process of doing a development in Kenyon. They looked at some property, but they could no longer bond themselves for the development.  They needed the city to bond for the development for about $1,300,000. The EDA felt that this would be too expensive.  The development would have provided approximately thirty (30) homes, and the infrastructure.  The city would have had to designate the area as a "TAX INCREMENT FINANCING DISTRICT" and would not get to keep the tax income for these lots up to twenty (20) years. The EDA felt that this would not be in the city's best interest, but kept looking at ways to make the expansion happen.

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