Jun 132013


Seen is the corner lot at the intersection of Reade Circle and Evans on Wednesday, June 12, 2013.   (Aileen Devlin/ The Daily  Reflector)

Aileen Devlin/The Daily Reflector

Seen is the corner lot at the intersection of Reade Circle and Evans on Wednesday, June 12, 2013. (Aileen Devlin/ The Daily Reflector)

By Michael Abramowitz

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Greenville City Council tonight will consider the first request under its new Capital Investment Grant program, designed to provide economic incentives for businesses and projects to start or grow in the city.

Also during the meeting at 7 p.m. at City Hall, council members will vote on a resolution to adopt the city’s 2013-14 budget.

The capital investment grant request from Taft-Ward ECU Campus Edge Apartments, LLC, would support the mixed-use commercial “Georgetown Redevelopment Project” in the block bounded by Reade Circle to the north, Evans Street to the west, Eighth Street to the south, and Cotanche Street to the east.

The property is within the center city revitalization area and economic development investment zone.

Plans for the site call for 300,000 square feet of commercial residential space (apartments), roughly 11,000 square feet of retail space, and a 429-space parking deck.

The total investment in the project is expected to approach $42 million.

The city’s grant to Taft-Ward would be equivalent to 49.5 percent of the incremental increase in tax revenue for the project. The dollar amount would not exceed $75,000 per year. Taft-Ward is asking that the grant be paid over a period of seven years for a total amount not to exceed $525,000.

Also on the agenda:

In addition to the $84.8 million dollar city budget, the proposed resolution also will establish the 2013-14 fiscal year budgets for Sheppard Memorial Library ($2.4 million), the Pitt-Greenville Convention and Visitors Authority ($976,334) and Greenville Utilities Commission ($281.2 million). The city’s manual of fees also will require council approval for adoption.

The budget has not received blanket approval from the council. Members Calvin Mercer and Marion Blackburn have expressed concerns about drawing down the city’s general fund to help finance some capital projects, including construction of a downtown parking deck, a project that received council approval on Monday.

City staff also have recommended approval of an ordinance requested by the University Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative Committee to amend on-street parking restrictions for controlled residential parking areas in the area north of East Carolina University.

The proposed revisions will allow the city to implement controlled parking Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. without requiring a petition signed by at least 51 percent of the residents, which has been the policy to date. The signs would cost an estimated $18,000.

City staff will present results of a follow-up downtown Greenville traffic calming pilot study. The post study has been performed to determine if the application of certain traffic control devices met the goals of a traffic calming project.

The original study was presented in February by the police and public works departments to assist in traffic control without restricting vehicular access.

A series of traffic control devices were deployed at key locations within the study area and speed and volume data were collected.

City staff said the devices have achieved the desired goals and the police and public works departments have recommended that they be made permanent.

The council also will consider Councilman Mercer’s request that they explore the possibility of pursuing a N. C. Department of Commerce certified retirement community designation.

The application fee for the Certified Retirement Community designation is $10,000 or 50 cents per capita, whichever is greater. Based on Greenville’s population, the application fee would be approximately $43,000.

The application, if approved, would be filed in January.

Contact Michael Abramowitz at mabramowitz@reflector.com or 252-329-9571.

via The Daily Reflector.


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