Thursday, March 5, 2015

Ozaukee County Board Votes to Spend $1 Million to Preserve Lake Views for Homeowners in Pricey New Development

The development is planned for an area just north of Lion's Den Gorge Nature Preserve.

 Photo credit:  Wisconsin Explorer

Ozaukee County to spend up to $1 million on lakefront development. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 3/4/2015)
[Chicago-area developer Tom] Swarthout [Highview Group Ltd.] is planning lots with a minimum size of 15,000 square feet, selling for an average price of $300,000, and homes ranging from 2,500 to 3,500 square feet, with expected values of $700,000 to nearly $1 million. 

Highland Group is seeking city financial help of $5 million to $6 million to help pay for both the nature preserve purchase and for sewers, roads and other public improvements needed for the site. If the Common Council approves that tax incremental financing district, Cedar Vineyard's property taxes would repay those funds over 20 years.

Just wondering.  Would this county board action have taken place if a rich developer hadn't entered the picture?

Price points of comparison.  Median value of all, not just new, owner-occupied housing units (2009-2013) in Ozaukee County is $250,000, compared to $167,100 for the entire state.  (SourceU.S. Census Quickfacts)

A similar high-end development, complete with winery, is proposed for Lake Forest, Illinois.

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