V&A begins redevelopment study for Hartford’s former Kmart property

Posted by on Oct 9, 2019 in News | 0 comments

HARTFORD, WISC. (with excerpts from gmtoday.com) — Since Kmart closed its Hartford Plaza location along Highway 60 in the city, the site has had very little activity. Within the last few months the city applied for and received grant money from the state’s Brownfield Grants Program, which is coordinated by Washington County.

“The grant was for about $24,000 and other remaining  costs are to be paid by Equitable Bank, who has taken over the property,” said Hartford Area Development Corp. Executive Director Tom Hostad. “We are all hoping a site redevelopment study can show other possible uses for the land so a developer can be enticed into redeveloping the location.”

Vandewalle and Associates, the planning firm that has done previous work for the city successfully, was awarded the contract for the study.

“We want to determine the best way to move forward to market this property and we feel this study should be able to make the correct decision,” said Mayor Tim Michalak. “The bank has been helpful in stepping forward and working with us on this. The bank currently has a company working to sell the property.”

Michalak said those involved want to see what is the property’s best use.

“We certainly have had thoughts about we feel that property could sustain for the betterment of the entire community, but you have to have a developer that’s willing to step up with you and partner with you on that,” Michalak said. “I’m very optimistic. It is a prime location. Conducting the study is showing that the community is willing to marshal its resources to work with a developer that has the imagination to move forward with something the city believes is something profitable for a developer and a real benefit to the city.”

Michalak said Hartford is not the only community that’s been dealing with what some are calling “big box blight” when they leave the community.

“We don’t want to get someone in there for just for the sake of filling it for the short term; we want to have a plan that will be a long-term solution that we won’t have to worry about the property for a long time,” Michalak said.

You can read the full article here.

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