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Board of Aldermen 'Underwhelmed' With Centrum's Crestwood Court Plans

Mutual feelings prevailed through a lot of discussion about the former mall and its future uses at Crestwood's Board of Aldermen meeting Tuesday.

The City of Crestwood's Board of Aldermen, after several clarifications and explanations, agreed on one thing for certain about Crestwood Court redevelopment ideas at the July 24 Board meeting.

The Board collectively stated they were "underwhelmed" with Centrum Properties' informal proposal . 

The standing but practically vacant Crestwood Court facility rose back to the agenda surface at length for the first time since the presentation, looking at the next steps in the general redevelopment process.

"We all want a development at Crestwood Court," Mayor Jeff Schlink said amid aldermen conversations about what types of businesses should operate within the Court. "How that looks and what that plan is is where we differ."

Ward 3 Alderman Paul Duchild chimed in with similar comments. "Judging from the conversations I've had with residents, people are underwhelmed by [Centrum's] plan," Duchild said.

Further discussion suggested the time and money that Centrum would have to invest to make their plan more realistic and formal, but the Board agreed: As Ward 4's Alderman John Foote expressed, Crestwood is "hesitant to jump in with Centrum's plans" at this point.

City Attorney Robert Golterman said he and Centrum's representing lawyers have been in touch and Centrum is "working diligently" to move forward. Golterman added Centrum was hoping to begin working on a preliminary funding agreement by August, but reiterated the ball is now in the Board's court to operate on any sort of timeline.

The agenda topics in regards to Crestwood Court redevelopment involved selecting bond or special counsel for the process as well as developing a request for proposals for planning services.

. Golterman recommended hiring out one of these firms especially to handle tax increment financing (TIF), community improvement districts (CID) and transportation development districts (TDD). 

After general speculation about the future of Crestwood Court, the Board ultimately conceded to postpone making a decision about special counsel and was later decided to be put on the next agenda. 

"We want to look like experts, like we're ready," said Ward 1 Alderwoman Mimi Duncan. "I want our team to be assembled before anyone comes to us."

The Board approved moving forward with an RFP for Crestwood Court redevelopment project planning services. Upon its release, a 30-day response time would be issued and would need to include further best-, average- and worst-case scenarios for specific items.

John Dough July 25, 2012 at 02:13 PM
Why do I get the feeling we will be having this conversation 3 years from now?..I think we should form a commitee to see if I'm right in my assesment of the situation..

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