After nearly one year of deliberation, the proposal to redevelop the Edgewater hotel could come before City Council for final approval in May.
Ald. Bridget Maniaci, District 2, said the application for a Tax Incremental Finance district was signed and filed with a recommendation for the City Council to refer the application to the Board of Estimates at their next meeting.
The TIF would raise the income tax throughout a specific district surrounding the hotel. The city would use the additional tax revenue to reimburse their $16 million dollar loan to Hammes Co., the Edgewater’s developer.
Hammes will present their plans to both the Board of Estimates and the city’s Landmarks Commission when the bodies hold separate meetings May 10. Those will be the last major meetings the project must go through before going to City Council.
Maniaci said she felt relieved Hammes had signed and submitted the TIF application.
Hammes spokesperson Sarah Carpenter said the company has prioritized the Board of Estimates meeting because of the crucial nature of the TIF application to the financing of the project.
On Wednesday, City Attorney Michael May sent a memo to City Council saying the council could vote on an appeal of the Plan Commission’s decision to approve the Edgewater project.
The appeal, filed by Mansion Hill residents opposed to the Plan Commission’s decision earlier this month, was previously deemed invalid by the city attorney’s office as a result of a lack of sufficient signatures.
Maniaci said the council would need a two-thirds majority, which she said is unlikely, in order for the appeal to be successful. Maniaci added it is an “inverse” vote, which only requires four votes to deny the approval.
“Two-thirds of the council would have to agree with Fred Mohs, which is highly unlikely,” Maniaci said.
Fred Mohs, president of the Mansion Hill Steering Committee and opponent of the project, said only the city can determine what to do with the issue at this point.
“The ball is in their court,” Mohs said. “Obviously there are several options. Our steering committee has options as well.”
Maniaci said there is one additional variable that could stand in the way of the council’s final votes on the project being completed before the end of May. She said Ald. Brian Solomon, District 10, plans to have surgery, which could postpone the votes to later this summer.
If the Board of Estimates approves the TIF application and Landmarks approves the plan at the May 10th meeting, Maniaci said the approvals, in addition to other zoning and planning approvals from other city committees, would come before the council at a May 18 meeting, which could be split into two nights.