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  Thursday July 31st, 2014    

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City covets Wilson Township (07/14/2013)
According to city studies, the land at the interchange of Highway 43 and Interstate 90 is the most feasible location for new industrial land near Winona. After allowing its latest industrial park to be filled with large retail stores, the city is now highlighting its lack of industrial land as a pressing concern. Outside financial advisors reminded Port Authority officials last Thursday that bringing in new land to develop was key to increasing the city’s tax base. For years, the city has had ambitions to annex much of Wilson Township, make the interchange land part of the city, open up the valleys in between to commercial and residential developers, and spend over $50 million to provide sewer and water to the area. Mayor Mark Peterson and City Manager Judy Bodway reiterated those intentions in interviews this spring. In 2015, the city will be free to try to annex more land from Wilson Township, per a 2005 agreement between the city and township.

Borrowing and core city user fees helped finance the $2.1 million the city has spent to date on providing sewer and water service to newly annexed properties in Pleasant Valley. At least $750,000 of spending is still anticipated, not counting costs for extending utility pipes to the rest of Pleasant Valley and the Sweetwater subdivision south of Garvin Heights. The final figure will likely be over $3 million. Current expenditures for annexation may pay for themselves if all of the properties in Pleasant Valley are densely developed. 

 

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