May 21, 2012


The regular meeting of the City of Mishawaka Redevelopment Commission was called to order at 6:30 p.m., Monday, May 21, 2012, in Room 205, City Hall, 600 East Third Street, Mishawaka, Indiana. Commissioners Eberhart, Troiola, Ermeti, Pingel, and Stillson were present. Commissioner O’Dell was absent. In addition to members of the public, the following were also in attendance: Dave Thomas, Community Development Director; Ken Prince, City Planner; John Gourley, Legal Counsel; Kari Myers, Administrative Planner; and Joe Dits of the South Bend Tribune.

Commissioner Troiola moved to approve the minutes of April 23, 2012 as circulated. Commissioner Ermeti seconded; motion carried.

Project Updates
Ken Prince presented Resolution 2012-02 authorizing the Commission to execute and deliver a Bill of Sale for certain construction improvements and all other related agreements, instruments, certificates and documents for the Mishawaka River Center Apartments project. Commissioner Troiola moved to approve Resolution 2012-02. Commissioner Ermeti seconded; motion carried.

Mr. Prince presented a Memorandum of Understanding with Habitat for Humanity of St. Joseph County, Inc., for assistance in down-payment of the property at 5225 Grape Road, formerly Frank’s Nursery. Habitat intends to purchase the former Frank’s Nursery and remodel as a Restore. The Commission’s investment will be $390,000.00 and Habitat will spend $650,000.00 to remodel the building to suit their needs. Approximately $30,000.00 in additional funds will be spent by the City in legal and architectural fees.

Mr. Prince also said as part of the MOU Habitat will build nine (9) homes in the NWTIF district through 2015. He said the City provides a subsidy of $40,000.00 per single story and $60,000.00 per two story home. Commissioner Troiola moved to accept the Memorandum of Understanding with Habitat. Commissioner Ermeti seconded; motion carried.

Mr. Prince said as a follow up, he presented Resolution 2012-03 approving the use of TIF revenues and approving and authorizing the execution of a MOU with Habitat. He also said it authorizes Commission president and secretary to execute all documents to implement the MOU. Commissioner Troiola moved to approve Resolution 2012-03. Commissioner Ermeti seconded; motion carried.

Center for Hospice Campus/Central Park Update
Mr. Prince handed out 3 pages to show the progress being made on Hospice Campus design. He said the design is modern, yet fitting within the context.

Mr. Prince also handed out a concept plan for Central Park. The design has not been presented to nor approved by the Park Board. They are still working out the details.

Commissioner Eberhart said it would be helpful to see an overlay. Mr. Prince said on the aerial shown, you can see where the houses have been removed.

Commissioner Eberhart asked if Hospice still had plans to use the floral shop. Mr. Prince said yes, it will be a doctor’s office.

Commissioner Stillson asked when the improvements to Central Park would be completed. Mr. Prince said the project will be done in three phases. He said the park portion is under design and will have to see where the other portions come back cost wise.

Commissioner Eberhart asked if the City anticipated taking any property along Mishawaka Avenue to enlarge the park. Mr. Prince said no, the marina and EMS building back up to the park. Other than that, the rest is residential and the City has no plans nor the desire to purchase residential property for the park.

Commissioner Ermeti asked what is the target date for Hospice. Mr. Prince said they are still hoping to start construction this summer and occupy spring of next year.

Purchase Agreement 422 E. Grove Street
Mr. Thomas presented a purchase agreement for 422 E. Grove Street using NSP funds to tear down and use as a new home site. He said it has been sitting vacant for a few years. Commissioner Ermeti moved to approve the Purchase Agreement for 422 E. Grove Street. Commissioner Troiola seconded; motion carried.

Neighborhood Programs
Commissioner Troiola asked if there is a cap on the number of properties we’re going to purchase. Mr. Thomas was hoping for 13 properties.

Commissioner Troiola said if we’re only building “X” number of homes, how many total properties do we have? Mr. Thomas said 4 properties have been purchased since the beginning of NSP3 and we may have 20-22 total roperties. He said we give some to Habitat to use and also use some for 1st Time Homebuyer program and then there are properties we just don’t have a good use for.

Commissioner Eberhart asked if those properties could be sold to adjacent property owners or could they be sold to developers? John Gourley said not all lots are ideal for building.

Mr. Thomas said we may offer 646 Lincolnway East property on open market.

Commissioner Stillson asked if the 20-22 properties included the ones along Main Street. Mr. Thomas said no, but he could update the list at the next meeting.

Commissioner Troiola asked with the lots we have, can they choose the lot. Mr. Thomas said the end use has a specific date to be met. He said original NSP funds have an end date which all funds have to be expended and if not spent on time, we may have to pay back funding we used to obtain the property.

Commissioner Ermeti asked how the First Time Homebuyer Program is marketed. Mr. Thomas said he speaks to service clubs, information is on City’s website, the Communicator, and Facebook. He said the plan is to build 6 homes this year, 2 from the waiting list are still interested and he is going to the bank tomorrow to make sure they are worthy candidates.

Summer of Service
Mr. Thomas said our first 2012 Summer of Service project was last weekend in conjunction with 1st United Methodist Church. He said they scraped, power-washed and even did some landscaping at the home. He said there were some minor items to be completed, but it went well for the first project of the season.

Mr. Thomas said the student weekend is June 14-17 with 4 teams and 4 projects, 150 students. He said this year they are splitting up between Mishawaka and Elkhart. He said last year there were too many students and not enough work. Projects for this year will include work at Merrifield, Crawford, and Wilson Park where they will paint the gatehouse and inside of the warming shelter. Also, some landscaping behind the Police Station.

Also, Mr. Thomas said bathrooms at Mary Gibbard will be painted; the maintenance shed and pressbox at Twin Branch will also be painted. He said Roger Shields met with the various departments to determine the need for this year.

Anything Brought Before Commission
Release of Mortgage
Mr. Thomas presented a Release of Mortgage for Zia Saeed.

Amended Subordination Agreement
Mr. Thomas also presented an amended Subordination Agreement for Bogonia. Mr. Thomas said the bank prepared it and there were several errors, so the amendment is being presented so it can be recorded.

931 E. 9th Street
Mr. Thomas presented a Warranty Deed for 931 E. 9th Street. He said the City took title to the property, but the Redevelopment Commission should have taken title. Mr. Gourley said it will be presented to the Board of Public Works and Safety tomorrow for approval. He said it gives the Commission more flexibility as to what can be done with the property. Commissioner Troiola moved to approve the Warranty Deed for 931 E. 9th Street, subject to Board of Public Works and Safety approval.

The Commission discussed the opportunity at Squads, 502 W. 6th Street. Mr. Thomas said the building itself is within the NSP3 area, however the house and parking lot to the north is not within the NSP3 area. He said he received appraisals for Squads, $45,000.00, and the house and parking lot, $34,000.00, and his issue is what funds can be used to purchase the house and lot. Mr. Thomas said the corner would be nice to continue the work along West 6th Street, but the bank isn’t going to want to just sell Squads. It goes up for auction on June 24.

Next Meeting
An Executive Session of the Redevelopment Commission was scheduled for 5:30 p.m., Monday, June 18, 2012, with regular session to immediately follow at 6:30 p.m.

The meeting was adjourned at 7:27 p.m.


Respectfully submitted: 

Kari Myers, Administrative Planner

David Thomas, Community Development Director

M. Gilbert Eberhart, President

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