Ames city council discusses The Resort

Tedi Mathis

The Ames City Council discussed tax abatement and safety concerns surrounding the completion of The Resort on Stanton Avenue next to Legacy Tower apartments.

At the meeting Feb. 12, an attorney hired by Campustown Investors spoke with the city council and requested they receive their tax abatement before March 1 on good faith that they will finish their project.

The debate stems from the Urban Revitalization Plan, which gives tax abatements to developments and redevelopments in urban areas of Ames when they meet certain requirements.

Because they had not yet installed screens on the balconies of the south side of Legacy Tower, the council debated whether or not to give the clients the tax abatement, as well as other reasons.

The screens would prevent anything bigger than four inches in diameter from going off the balconies, which would stop people from throwing objects or trying to jump into the new pool.

Jami Larson, city council member, said this concern is partially rooted in “problems we’ve had in Campustown with balconies.”

Many council members were also unclear as to why the screens were not already in place. “I could go with an extension of time if it was the city causing the issue,” Larson said.

Judy Parks, acting city attorney, helped to explain the legal situation to the council and cited the client as having a lack of concrete evidence. “We haven’t seen that,” Parks said.

After much debate, the council passed a motion to delay a final agreement until the next city council meeting Feb. 26, when they have had more time for discussion.

Following this motion, the council moved on to discussion about the annexation of property in the north part of Ames, an issue that has sparked heated debate at previous council meetings.

“We do not at this time have annexation agreements finalized and signed at the four properties,” said Bob Kindred, assistant city manager to the city of Ames.

Some residents from the area to be annexed were present to speak to the city council about their positions and have chosen not to be voluntarily annexed, though this would not halt the annexation of the property.

With a lot of questions still in the air concerning water in the annexed area and the specific annexation of property, the council decided to table the topic until a later meeting.

Other resolutions passed at the city council meeting include the final approval for the expansion of the CyRide bus facility and the purchase of four new Ford Interceptor all-wheel-drive police sedans.