BY BENJAMIN J. GOHS, NEWS EDITOR
Glen Catt’s South Lake Street multi-use structure work-plan was amended this week to reflect major changes to the project.
The change was made to ensure the proper tax credits and repayment amounts reflect the project—which has been downsized from a $6.5-million three-story development to one story with a price tag of $3.8 million.
“The scope of the South Lake Street project Glen Catt is working on has changed fairly significantly since we looked at this in May,” Boyne City Main Street Program Executive Director Lori Meeder told the Boyne City Commission on Tuesday Oct. 27.
The Charlevoix County Brownfield Redevelopment Authority approved Catt’s combined brownfield/Act 31 work-plan in May.
Then, Boyne City officials approved the project on May 26.
It was granted final approval on May 27, by the county.
“Based on the change in the scope of the project—due to some soil issues etc.—Mac McClelland (a consultant for the Charlevoix County Brownfield Redevelopment Authority) thought it would be preemptive if we amended the brownfield plan,” Meeder said. “The project has been reduced from about a $6.5-million project to $3.8 million, thus also reducing the eligible activity reimbursement that will be available and, because both are reduced, relatively speaking, it won’t really change the payback time-period.”
The project plans began with a three-story new structure, which had anticipated holding a restaurant and pub, apartments, a bank, expanded parking and even a drive-thru, but has since been scaled back to a one-story remodel of the two existing buildings on the property, which could offer a gym, pub and space for lease—with the possibility of a bank locating there.
“Right now, everything’s on track,” Catt told commissioners. “We’ve got some challenges with the MEDC (Michigan Economic Development Corporation) and some of the expected help we were going to get with the MEDC but we’re going to plug ahead and make it work.”
He added, “We’ve got some great tenants lined up… We look forward to having a nice-looking building with great tenants.”
Back in August, Catt told the Boyne City Planning Commission that the soils and old foundations on-site would not allow for a second story.
He also said digging them up and replacing them would simply be too costly.
So, he will work with the former Boyne Arts Collective building, located at 210 South Lake St., and a nearby former bus garage, to create his multi-use development.
The project is still expected to feature a 7 Monks Taproom pub and restaurant in spring of 2016.
Other highlights of the changes to the plan include leaving parking as-is, the deck being scaled back to maximize the view of the lake as well as to create an additional parking space, creation of a green space, and a special dumpster area that could double as parking space.
Much of the layout will remain the same.
According to Catt, there will also be 2,500-square-feet of lease space and a men’s and women’s locker area and boaters facilities.
A gym and fitness center would share the locker room with the boaters from Catt’s One Water Marina.
Boyne City Commissioner Tom Neidhamer said he fully supports the latest version of Catt’s project.
“I’m also in full support of seeing this project move forward,” said Boyne City Commissioner and Mayor Pro Tem Delbert “Gene” Towne. “I think it’s going to create an enhanced business district in that part of the city, (it’s) gonna create a new tax base, and jobs.”
Boyne City Commissioner Derek Gaylord said he agreed that taking care of the issue ahead of time is the right thing to do so that the proper taxing reduction and reimbursement are ensured.
“I’m looking forward to seeing the project completed,” said Boyne City Commissioner Laura Sansom, who pointed out that some correspondence still referred to the project as having residential space, which the project no longer includes.
Sansom asked how many tenants there will be.
Catt said 7 Monks will be the main tenant, and that there is approximately 9,500-square-feet of space throughout the rest of the buildings.
“Right now it’s looking like maybe just two—two or three—and some sub-tenants,” Catt said. “I’ll know a lot more in the next two weeks.”
Sansom asked Catt how extensive the brownfield cleanup—which deals with the cleaning and removal of hazardous materials—will be.
“The majority of it we’re taking care of is the asbestos and the lead paint,” Catt said, who added that there was less asbestos in the buildings than originally thought.
A motion to approve the amended brownfield plan was unanimously approved.