City plans to flip Third Street property for development

September 27, 2018

The city of Beaver Dam plans to put the property where the former Third Street apartments once stood up for development.

The city’s plan commission unanimously recommended accepting an offer from the firm that owns the property, 600 W. Third St., to effectively donate the land to the city in exchange for $1. The offer still needs to be approved by the Common Council, which will look at it on Monday. The apartments were destroyed in a fire earlier this year.

Officials apparently have a plan in mind for the property. They said it would be immediately flipped to another buyer, instead of being placed on the open market, which would also have to be approved by the plan commission and the council.

“This is a broader discussion of a bigger development discussion,” Mayor Becky Glewen said.

The city is also in ongoing discussions to possibly buy the vacant Lakeview Hospital building, which is owned by Beaver Dam Community Hospital. A firm associated with Ben Westra, the president of WDS Construction, recently bought the property with a historic house that is on the corner between the Lakeview building and the Third Street parcel.

The potential buyer would deal with outstanding property taxes on the property, about $20,000. The buyer would also deal with filling in the hole on the property and dealing with security.

The ruined apartment building was recently demolished and the foundation has been removed, leaving nothing but a hole for the moment.

Christopher Kuranz, the agent for the firm that owns the Third Street parcel, requested that a marker be placed to commemorate the two people who died in the April fire. They were Corrine Bolin, 63, and Jade Wilson, 24. The buyer would work with the city on the details of his open request.

Kuranz told the Daily Citizen that re-building would be too cost-prohibitive.

Residents of the 17-unit building were displaced by the fire that happened April 7. Insurance investigators found that the fire probably started on a stove-top in Bolin’s apartment.

According to county records, the property’s value was assessed at $659,200 in total and $126,000 for just the land in 2017. Kuranz’s corporation bought the property in 2005 for $655,000. The building was constructed in the 1960s and was known as the Executive Apartments.

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