This Tuesday, the $21 million City Block project will be up for a vote at the Paducah City Commissioners meeting. An ordinance to adopt the agreement was introduced on July 28. Mayor Brandi Harless is ‘all in’ stating that the project is a good investment with respectable developers. The project will feature a boutique hotel with public parking, green space and residential/commercial buildings with over 40 residential units on 2nd and Broadway.
The agreement states that Weyland Ventures will buy two tracts of land for $296,000. The city will keep a portion of the tract in the middle of the space which will be redeveloped for public parking and green space.
Paducah has preliminary approval for the Tax Increment Finance (TIF) District designed to ensure state tax revenue for downtown development. The district covers approximately 315 acres and the hope is to get approval from the state this fall.
Taking a look at the space ‘as is’ it's a 2.88 acre lot with 213 parking spaces. The reduction in the number of parking spaces proposed in the project will cost 40 public parking spaces leaving 172 available spaces. As it stands right now, there’s a lot of repair work that needs to be done. Estimates have been around a million dollars. With Weyland Ventures, the project will help the city repair the potholes, cracks, and depressions due to settling.
As per the agreement, the gazebo, horse-drawn carriage attraction, and cobblestone sidewalk at Water St. and Broadway along with personalized bricks around the gazebo and in front of Broussard’s Cajun Cuisine would remain.
The City Block’s appraised value is $810,000 with the tracts at $141,000 and $155,000. Weyland Venture’s payment will be deferred and will begin on the sixth anniversary of the certificate of occupancy paid in five consecutive yearly installments. The project will be split in two construction phases with the hotel first and the mixed-use buildings second.
Losing parking spaces has been an issue for local businesses. The city says it has performed assessments of parking spaces and there is still plenty of off-street parking available to accommodate summer tourism months. There’s also the farmer’s market parking spaces that are underutilized during tourism season.
Weyland agrees to accept the site ‘as is’. The site dates back to the 1800s and though environmental testing of the property has come back clean, there could be surprises with property dating back 200 years. Weyland has agreed to maintain all parking including lighting, yard work, and trash.
The city-owned tracts will be developed by Weyland, however the city will reimburse the company for design and construction of the city-owned public space. The expenses are TIF eligible.