It appears that the special meeting for the Wausau City Council to consider granting Wausau Opportunity Zones (WOZ), Inc., and T. Wall Enterprises an 11-month extension to complete their proposed Foundry on 3rd on the former mall site has been rescheduled for Aug. 28.
I intend to ask T. Wall Enterprises to commit to purchasing Lot 4 in exchange for granting the delay.
I previously asked for closing by Labor Day, but city delays in holding discussions are preventing timely decision-making. I want to require that T. Wall Enterprises buy the land from WOZ no later than Oct. 31.
I was in the audience a few years back when Mike Frantz of Frantz Community Developers buffaloed the council to extend him more time on Riverlife 1 by declaring in front of council that his net worth was somewhere between $15 (million) and $30 million. I wanted to stand up and yell, “Show me the money.” T. Wall can’t tie up prime real estate in downtown Wausau indefinitely. We’re at a “Show me the money” moment, or we need to start looking at other development proposals.
The transfer of the property to T. Wall would simplify a deal going forward by removing WOZ from the negotiations and allowing the city to deal directly with T. Wall.
My understanding from the start was that WOZ was the facilitator, so moving forward, a two-party negotiation is just easier than a three-party one. It is time for WOZ to sell the land and get to work on getting us projects for the balance of the lots on the mall site. We’ve borrowed and spent millions on rehabilitating the former mall site on their behalf, they need to get some tax base developed to re-pay those bonds.
Doug Diny, Wausau City Council, District 4
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