DDA to sell five West Washington St. lots

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By Nick Nunn staff writer

The Downtown Development Authority of Madison (DDA) plans to sell five property tracts in the West Washington Street Gateway. A for sale notice for the tracts was published on March 6, and the DDA members discussed the conditions for the sale of the tracts during their annual retreat and planning session.

In the information materials concerning the tracts, which Madison Planning Director Monica Callahan described as being the DDA’s “bid packet” for the land sales, conditions for the purchase of the tracts were stated, including historic preservation, zoning and urban redevelopment plan requirements.

The first lot, a .420-acre tract at the corner of West Jefferson Street and West Fifth Street, contains a “viable historic residential structure” which “shall be rehabilitated.” The development parameters for lot one also stated that proposals for non-residential uses will receive priority, as the lot is in Madison’s Opportunity Zone.

Being in the Opportunity Zone qualifies businesses on the property to receive Job Creation Tax Credits. The .436-acre tract designated as the second lot, which is contiguous to lot one and fronts West Jefferson Street, is also in the Opportunity Zone, and the development conditions require that “a new infill cottage” shall be constructed on the property, in accordance with the DDA’ urban redevelopment plan.

The third lot, a .422-acre lot next to lot two, has similar requirements to lot two, including historic preservation restrictions and the requirement to construct a cottage on the lot. Lot four is a 3.064-acre tract located behind lots one, two, and three on West Fifth Street and is zoned R-4, small lot residential district.

The development parameters stated that the “infill construction shall be residential apartments.” The intended purpose for this lot is a 50-unit senior housing project by Parallel Housing, Inc., but Callahan stated that bidding will be “open to the public at large.”

The DDA signed a memorandum of understanding with Parallel Housing, Inc., and the Woda Group, Inc., in January stating the DDA’s commitment to provide support and real estate either “at a nominal fee” or in a lease agreement in exchange for the development of a 50-unit senior housing complex, from which the developers will be able to obtain Low Income Housing Tax Credits.

Lot five is a 1.742-acre tract on West Fifth Street contiguous to lot four and is also zoned R-4. The conditions for the property indicate that proposals for “stormwater facilities, greenspace, and/or recreational facilities” will receive preference from the DDA.

Callahan stated that received bids will not be considered absolute, and that the DDA will be able to reject offers or “tweak” the parameters of their stated conditions as necessary.

Callahan also noted that the West Washington Gateway would be the affected area of the proposed Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) ordinance, should the Madison City Council pass the amendment. The deadline for bids is March 17 at 4 p.m.The DDA will review bids at their next regular meeting on March 20.

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