By Shereen Siewert

Members of Wausau’s Economic Development Committee on Tuesday will review four proposals received for affordable housing on a city-owned Grand Avenue parcel, which is on the bus line and south of downtown.

Information on each proposal was only released late Monday afternoon. The proposals will be discussed at 5:15 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall. A closed session is on Tuesday’s agenda.

Commonwealth plan

Commonweath Development Corp. of America, out of Middleton, proposes a four-story, 50-unit affordable housing development with one, two and three-bedroom lots to accommodate both single individuals and families with younger children.

Commonwealth proposal for 700 Grand Ave. apartments. Source: City of Wausau.

The organization’s proposal pointed out that of all Marathon County communities, Wausau has the highest ALICE and poverty rate, at 46 percent. ALICE is an acronym for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed — households that earn more than the Federal Poverty Level, but less than the basic cost of living for the county. Commonwealth aims to provide units that target the workforce housing population as well as the low-income population.

Under the Commonwealth plan, monthly rent would range from $493 to $1,298 depending on the size of the apartment and income levels. The group seeks to purchase the land for $1 and receive $1.5 million from the city to assist in funding the roughly $16.5 million project. They also pledge to partner with local businesses to subcontract projects during construction.

Horizon plan

Horizon Development Group and Northernstar Companies propose a three-story, 49-unit development, also with one, two and three-bedroom units. Of those, 41 would be income restricted, while eight would be market rate apartments.

Proposed Thomas Pointe Apartments. Source: City of Wausau

Named the Thomas Pointe Apartments, the Madison and Milwaukee-based development team would set affordable rent levels between $400 and $1,o75 per month, with market rate apartments from $950 to $1,200 per month. The housing community would not be age-restricted, and developers would sign a 30-year land use restriction agreement to ensure that affordable units remain for the duration.

Horizon and Northernstar are seeking $3.5 million in ARPA funding and $800,000 in Tax Increment Financing for the roughly $13.2 million project. The group would purchase the property from Wausau for $245,000.

General Capital Group plan

A third proposal is from the team of General Capital Group and Danna Capital, who propose a four-story, 50-unit affordable housing development with apartments and townhouses. The project will also have one, two and three bedroom units.

General Capital plan. Source: City of Wausau

According to the proposal General Capital proposes purchasing the parcel for $175,000 and relies on $1.425 million in Tax Increment Financing. That number could change for the $14.4 million project if the city is willing to transfer the property for $1, the proposal states.

Gorman plan

The fourth proposal for the property at 700 Grand Ave. in Wausau is from a developer already familiar with the city, Gorman & Company. Gorman, which is renovating the Landmark and is involved in a proposal for affordable housing on the city’s near west side, is proposing a 50-unit affordable housing develpment specifically for seniors. The project would include 39 one-bedroom and 11 two-bedroom units.

Under the Gorman plan, monthly rent would range from $435 to $1,055 depending on income. To complete the $14.25 million project, the developers are seeking federal and state tax credits, funding from the FHLB Chicago Affordable Housing Fund and two mortgages. There is an identified gap in financing of about $1.7 million, which would entail some type of city participation, from Tax Increment Financing, HOME funds, ARPA funds or a combination of those elements, according to the proposal.

To see Gorman’s proposal and a design of how the complex would fit into the parcel, visit this link.

The city released the request for proposals in August.

Representatives from each company have been asked to attend Tuesday’s Economic Development Committee meeting and provide a presentation on their proposed project, said Economic Development Manager Randy Fifrick, in a Sept. 30 memo to committee members.

After the presentations, the committee is expected to discuss the proposals in closed session, during which staff rankings will be shared. Staff reviewed each proposal and ranked them based on the criteria contained in the RFP, but have not shared those rankings publicly.

If the committee chooses a proposal, the project would then be forwarded as a recommendation to the City Council.