FAIRWAY, Kan. – Developers take another step towards redeveloping vacant office buildings in Fairway Office Park into a new apartment complex.
Fairway City Council voted 6-2 in favor of creating a Tax Increase Funding District (TIF) at 4210 Shawnee Mission Parkway to help build a new housing complex for active seniors .
In a public hearing on Monday, Jim Poplinger told council the city should not approve the tax district because he didn’t believe homeowners would pay their fair share when it came to maintaining public infrastructure.
“The way I see it, it’s nothing but corporate welfare. The dollars that should be given to support municipal departments, fire departments, county departments are instead redirected to improve private property and generate profits for the owner. I don’t think it’s appropriate, ”Poplinger said.
Skip Hensler said he believes that because the owner has not kept up with the maintenance of the property so far, establishing a new tax district would not be appropriate.
“I think Fairway should really hold on and determine their market value for this property. It is a great asset. He has great potential, ”Hensler said.
Upon completion of the project, the five-story, 280.0-square-foot building would include 221 units ranging from studios to two-bedroom apartments.
The city has yet to enter into a formal TIF deal with the developer, and a specific dollar amount for the tax benefit has not been finalized.
“I think there is no doubt that he [the property] has been abused and ignored, but ignoring the possibility of a TIF neighborhood, and I say neighborhood rather than the TIF itself, you have to keep an open mind. At the end of the day, we want to know what’s best for Fairway, ”said board member Joseph Levin.
“It might not be this particular project, but eventually we’ll have to fix this property and do something with it. The neighborhood at least facilitates that, but doesn’t necessarily guarantee it.
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