By Shereen Siewert
WAUSAU — A proposed 31,000-square-foot medical facility will break ground Monday on Stewart Avenue in Wausau, at a site once pegged for big box retail development.
ENT & Allergy Associates will build a new facility this year on vacant land north of Menards along 28th Avenue. The land, at 512 S. 28th Ave., is currently owned by Ghidorzi Companies.
The groundbreaking ceremony is set to begin at 5:30 p.m. ENT & Allergy Associates’ current location is at 3200 Westhill Drive in Wausau.
The agreement between the city and 2800 Stewart Avenue, LLC was signed Oct. 16, 2012 and called for the developer to create about 85,000 square feet of retail or office facilities, according to Wausau Finance Director MaryAnn Groat. The developer, 2800 Stewart Avenue, LLC, is also referred to in city documents as Ghidorzi. The total development must be valued at at least $10.5 million by Jan. 1, 2020, and must create 50 full time and 20 part time jobs.
So far, 2.1 acres of land have been developed on the parcel, which sits across from Menards on the city’s far west side. The southwest parcel was sold in October 2012 to Convenience Store Investments for $1 million and is now the site of a Kwik Trip, according to Marathon County land records. That property now has an assessed value of $3,166,200, online tax records show, which generated $79,933.41 in taxable income for the city in 2016.
But the agreement also called for additional finished space to be valued at no less than $5.5 million by Jan. 1, 2016, city documents show. More than two years after the deadline, that portion of the development had not yet materialized — until now.
In two separate agreements, the city pledged up to $1,479,712 in grants to pay for site improvements and as of June 2016 had paid $513,484 toward the project, according to city documents. The grants are expected to be funded through tax increment and other available funds.
The developer purchased the property in August 2012 for $1.5 million. The property was previously owned by the state.