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Local

Developers look to Newton for commercial investment

Work the city has been doing to attract developers to Newton is paying off with a commercial developer seeking to purchase lots to build. A public hearing will be held on the sale of the property during the regular city council meeting on Monday.

The city has been approached by a commercial developer seeking to purchase two lots owned by the city on the south side of First Avenue West, just west of the railroad bridge at 1307 and 1309 First Ave. W. According to the developer, the land will be used to design and construct a commercial building along with a privately owned parcel adjacent to the city-owned lots. The adjacent land will be acquired separately from the city purchase.

The purchase price, terms of sale and identification of the purchaser will be identified following the public hearing and prior to the council acting on a resolution approving the sale.

The council will also review an application for a Historic Resource Development Program Grant for preparation and submittal of nominations papers to establish the First Avenue East and First Avenue West Residential Historic Districts. The Newton Historic Preservation Commission has completed a survey of the homes on First Avenue East and West and has determined that the two areas could qualify as two separate districts.

The city’s match of $7,000 is required to apply for the grant and can be covered by in-kind staff time, volunteer hours and provision of various minor supplies for the project, such as printing costs. If awarded, the grant will take the next step toward establishing the districts on the National Register of Historic Places.

Also on the agenda is an economic development grant for the former Newton Manufacturing building. Newton Elite Properties, LLC purchased the property in December and is working to improve the curb appeal. The grant would be used to place awnings on the east and north side of the existing building, concrete repairs would also be done to the east side and improvements would be made to the landscaping on the property. The total cost of the grant will not exceed $16,000.

Contact Jamee A. Pierson at 641-792-3121 ext. 6534 or jpierson@newtondailynews.com

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