Colfax Plan Commission and village board contemplate changes to East View developer’s agreement

By LeAnn R. Ralph

COLFAX —  The developer’s agreement for the East View residential development pertains to single family dwellings, but now that a developer has expressed interest in building duplexes, the agreement should be updated.

The Colfax Plan Commission and the Colfax Village Board met in separate meetings February 26 to begin contemplating what changes should be made to the East View developer’s agreement for the planned residential development along Dunn Street.

[emember_protected]  “What do you like about it? What would you like to see changed?” asked Lynn Niggemann, village administrator-clerk-treasurer, at the plan commission meeting.

Kevin Peterson of K&D Builders out of Menomonie spoke to the Colfax Plan Commission last October about his interest in building 12 duplexes in East View that would have a value of $2 million.

Peterson told the plan commission he has built similar developments in a number of different communities, including Cameron, Durand, Mondovi, Chetek, Prairie Farm and Eau Claire and is currently working on a project in Barron.

The existing developer’s agreement does not allow vinyl siding, but Peterson uses vinyl siding on the duplexes he builds, Niggemann said.

According to a clause in the developer’s agreement, “the Developer guarantees the building materials for the exterior of the home shall be brick, natural stone, wood clapboard, wood shingle, fiber cement siding or engineered wood siding. Vinyl siding, imitation brick or metal siding is prohibited.”

The developer’s agreement also requires four trees to be planted on single-family residential lots as well as requires the driveway surface to be concrete, asphalt, pavers or flagstone and prohibits a gravel driveway.

After the plan commission and the village board have agreed upon changes to the developer’s agreement, the village’s attorney will draft a new developer’s agreement to include those changes and to include multi-family units, Niggemann said.

The Colfax Village Board approved an offer to purchase for the East View development a little over seven acres from the James and Mary Schindler Revokable Trust in two separate purchases for a total of $110,100 in November of 2014.

The purchase involved buying 4.21 acres in 2014 at $15,000 per acre for a total of $63,150 and an additional 3.13 acres the following year at $15,000 per acre for a total of $46,950.

Phase 1 of East View contains single family residential lots, and phase 2 includes more single family lots as well as lots for four-plexes.

One house has been completed in East View.

Retainer

The developer’s agreement requires a retainer of $2,500 at the time the agreement is executed.

The Village of Colfax is giving away the lots in Phase I in East View as long as the house is completed within one year.

After a certificate of occupancy is provided to the village, the retainer will be returned to the developer.

If the developer does not provide a certificate of occupancy within 12 months of the agreement being signed, the developer will forfeit the retainer to the village.

The $2,500 retainer is for single-family dwellings, and the amount should be larger for a larger development, Niggemann said.

Details

Jason Johnson, plan commission member, said he would not “chase a developer out” if the developer wanted to plant three trees instead of four.

The developer in question has put vinyl siding on other developments, Niggemann said.

Plan Commission member Dave Hovre said he had looked at the company’s development in Barron, and the north side of the buildings were turning green.

Sometimes building siding will turn green if the buildings are not properly insulated, Hovre said.

Gary Stene, village president and chair of the plan commission, asked if Andy De Moe, the builder of the only new house that has been built in East View, had signed the developer’s agreement.

De Moe signed the developer’s agreement and returned a certificate of occupancy within 12 months, Niggemann said.

If the house had not been built, ownership of the lot would have reverted to the village, and the village would have kept the retainer, she said.

Regarding the material used for siding, “we need a minimum standard,” Hovre said.

David Wolff, plan commission member and village trustee, said he had a problem with changing restrictions for one particular developer.

Hovre also wondered who would pay for putting in the utilities.

The village board will have to decide what the village is willing to do, Niggemann said.

“We were never going to give any developer everything,” she said.

The consensus of the plan commission is that Niggemann should move forward with working on the developer’s agreement and then bring it back to the plan commission for a recommendation to the village board.

At the village board meeting, Stene reported on the plan commission meeting and said the plan commission would make proposed changes to the developer’s agreement that would be brought to the village board for a decision. [/emember_protected]