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More interest in Industrial Park in Willmar

A lot sits empty Friday in the Willmar Industrial Park.

WILLMAR—There are more businesses interested in purchasing land in the Willmar Industrial Park, said Bruce Peterson, director of Planning and Development Services, during Thursday's Community Development Committee meeting.

A technology service company, which is currently operating outside of the city of Willmar, has offered the city $28,000 for a small lot in the park. The business owner is planning on constructing a 4,800-square-foot office and shop building for approximately $250,000 to $300,000.

The business employs six full-time staff and one part-time and the paid salaries are in excess of the city's $12 an hour wage requirement.

The list price for the lot in question is $78,110, Peterson said.

However, the potential purchaser wants to utilize the Industrial Land Write Down Policy, which reduces the purchase price of city owned industrial park land based on new jobs and market value increase.

Peterson said the write-down would decrease the land price by about $50,000, which is less than the maximum allowed.

Peterson said the offer from the business is actually more than the city's asking price for the land after the write-down policy is used.

The committee recommended the city council approve an ordinance which would approve the sale. Once the ordinance is approved Peterson believes closing could happen within three weeks.

A current Industrial Park business is also interested in purchasing an additional six acres in the park, Peterson said. He hopes to see a formal request shortly.

And, after nearly a decade, the Federal Aeronautics Association has approved the final land release of the old airport.

"It took one month less than 10 years to accomplish," Peterson said. While he is not proud of how long it took, the city was finally able to work through the bureaucratic process, Peterson said.