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Planning Commission Passes 3rd TIF District for Boston Store

Village of Greendale hopes to see Sears and JCPenney jump on the remodeling bandwagon.

The Greendale planning commission unanimously approved a TIF district of $2 millions to help the $8.5 million interior remodeling project of in .

In just a little over a year the Village of Greendale has established two TIF districts and is about to establish the third for Boston Store to

The third TIF will help renovate only the interior of Boston Store, not the exterior. According to the proposal, the renovation will increase the value to $10.5 million.

along the South 76th Street Corridor, adjacent to Southridge Mall.

To go along with the mall renovation is the opening of a and the

The Village hopes that this will also encourage and Sears to renovate. At the planning commission meeting on Monday night it was said that Sears has already approached the Village about renovation, but is thinking about it.

The Boston Store TIF would be constructed with a 14-year payback, said Village Manager Todd Michaels. The Village recently sold the bonds with a 3.7 percentage rate of the second Southridge Mall TIF. That is one percent less than the Village anticipated.

Joe Russ of New Berlin was the only person to voice his opinion at the public hearing. He mentioned the shortfalls that West Bend is facing with their TIF district.

Village attorney Alan Marcuvitz addressed the concern by saying that communities like West Bend “didn’t do it the way we are doing it. They didn’t have guarantees or substance. We have learned from other communities.”

Boston Store was so encouraged by what they saw going on at Southridge that they approached the Village, said Marcuvitz.

“One of the healthiest things that has happened in the retail department store field is good competition,” Marcuvitz said. “Good competition is good for consumers, for the economy, for the community, and having a healthy upgraded Boston Store competing head to head with Macy’s is good for the citizens of Greendale.”

The Village was in discussions with Boston Store for about four months.

Marcuvitz also said that the project will have an immediate guaranteed value increase by 2012, even though the store won’t be completely refurnished until Spring 2012.

“There are empty, vacant, dark malls across the country in communities like ours that have malls of that nature and their communities have suffered,” said Village President John Hermes. “To let a mall go beyond a certain dark portion or position it will be very hard to arrest and in fact most can’t be arrested. They will continue to decline until they are dead. So it was the courage of the village board and village leadership to address this situation because the value of the mall started to decline.”

Hermes also said that the value of the mall continued to decline anyway, which gave the Village the opportunity to use the TIF district to help freeze the value.

The Greendale Village Board of Trustees will review the TIF and make a final decision.

Understanding a TIF district

According to the Village a TIF district will not have negative impact on resident’s taxes. “The base taxes paid by the properties within the tax incremental financing(TIF) district to the Village of Greendale, the Greendale School District, Milwaukee County, and the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewage District will be the same with or without the TIF. To further clarify, the base taxes paid by any property with the TIF district will be the same whether or not the TIF is implemented.”

TIF districts use future property taxes from the development to pay off loans needed to create the development. Property taxes from new developments are used solely to pay off the loan. Once the loan is covered, the development goes on the tax rolls and pays out to local schools, local government, county government, technical colleges and the state.

Current Developments

***Vacant buildings: Old Balley's and Borders

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