Tuesday 16 September 2014

West U Property Once Considered for Parkland Now For Sale

A piece of property that has been of interest to the city in the past for potential parkland is for sale.

A piece of property that has been of interest to the city in the past for potential parkland is for sale.

A “For Sale by Owner” sign has been placed in the yard of 3615 Pittsburgh, near Mercer and Poor Farm Ditch.

The city was interested in purchasing the property in 2006 after West U voters approved a $2 million bond program for parkland.

The parkland was included in the first bond program for the recreation center and Colonial Park Pool and was the only item to receive voter approval. The city has not issued the bonds.

The property is owned by the family of Clifford Ownby. The property is located on Pittsburgh and Poor Farm Ditch and is roughly one acre.

City Manager Michael Ross told InstantNewsWestU last August that the Ownbys wanted $4 million for their property in 2006, which was more than the city was willing to pay.

The authorization to sell the $2 million bonds is approved by voters and is available for 10 years until it goes “stale” and the city can no longer use it, he said.

The bond money could be used to acquire parkland if the council so chooses, Ross said last year.

A subcommittee of the West U Parks and Recreation Board has been looking into parkland acquisition and presented a plan to city council in March.

Parks Chair John Wilkinson told the council that the subcommittee was looking at acquiring parkland in the area east of Auden and west of Buffalo Speedway.

The land would need to be a minimum of 100 feet by 200 feet or 0.5 acres and would preferably be on a corner lot on a secondary and through street, he said. Wilkinson said they wouldn’t want the park to be on a main or high trafficked street like Weslayan or Buffalo Speedway.

The subcommittee discussed specific properties they were looking at with the council in closed executive session.

3 Comments

  1. Brokelyn says:

    $4 million!!!!!
    I’ll sell Cliff my property for 20% less than that per square fooot. He can make an easy buck I guess.
    It’s worth $2.4-2.5 million. Good job West U in not paying up.

  2. edward says:

    They should have bought the two double depth lots on Mercer last year when the plans to build four houses on them were quashed. The lots are still just sitting there with rotting houses. Price was under the bond limit, IIRC.

    • Mercer Resident says:

      Check again. The lots have been purchased by a developer and the houses have been demo’d.

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