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The Docket: Webster Avenue redevelopment talks continue

The city is proposing a Webster Avenue Industrial Development District
The Docket is your political forecast that takes a look ahead at what’s happening in politics...
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Published: Aug. 17, 2021 at 5:55 AM CDT
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NORTH MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - The City of North Mankato continues its work in the development of the Webster Avenue area.

Now, the city is proposing a Webster Avenue Industrial Development District.

Monday night, the City of North Mankato moved forward with one of the first steps in the Webster Avenue Redevelopment Plan, when the Port Authority scheduled a public hearing on the proposed establishment of the district.

One key part of Webster Avenue the city is paying attention to is Norwood Inn.

The city recently agreed through settlement agreements to acquire the inn as part of redevelopment.

Related: City of North Mankato to lease out hotel building to Windom company

Now, a Port Authority vote would establish the development district, a defined area for development in the city.

“So this establishes the district that allows the Port Authority to provide incentives to potential redeveloping properties or new properties that may choose to locate into the district. So it’s a critical step that Minnesota statute requires for the Port Authority to act on those initiatives,” said City Administrator John Harrenstein.

According to Harrenstein, there’s a few possibilities for what’s next for the inn.

“So the first option could be selling it to a developer with a new redevelopment plan where the structure might be raised, a new structure’s constructed. The other option is to redevelop the existing property to a functioning hotel, event center or restaurant,” he said.

The city could also demolish the building and construct a new hotel.

Related: The Docket: North Mankato proposes Webster Avenue area redevelopment

But that will wait to be decided until after the Port Authority public hearing on Sept. 7, where residents will get the chance to speak on development in the area.

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