After receiving two bids for the lot on Main Avenue between the pharmacy and the old bank building, now the Britt Group’s building, the Britt City Council decided to sell the lot to Jared Wingert for $5,000.
In his verbal bid, Wingert, owner of Mojo Productions, said he would turn the lot into a public eating area with picnic tables and a little park for people to have some sort of Main Avenue dining.
“It’s Main Street dining, pretty much,” city administrator Debra Sawyer said. “I mean, it would be set up to have picnic tables, people – he can do whatever, you know, he wants to do a bunch of little events there.”
Sawyer said other communities have sidewalk dining tables, but that doesn’t really offer much with just two little tables against the buildings.
“And in the spring and the fall, it’s nice to just take your food, sit outside and kind of decompress,” she said.
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The other offer on the lot was from Britt Group for $100, which would want to turn the lot into a parking lot for the old bank building or a little outdoor area, essentially using it for when they finish renovating the bank building.
“I agree with the sentiment that if someone wanted to build a business there, they could, but we also find lots in a commercial park, and in all honesty, I think if someone really wanted to Jared would be willing to sell the lot anyways,” Mayor Ryan Arndorfer said.
Arndorfer said the council didn’t want to hold onto it, since they are paying property taxes on the empty lot each year. Granted, it’s only about $100 in property taxes for that one lot, but with all the other empty lots the city owns and pays taxes on, it all adds up, he said.
“We just pay it on a lot of little lots like that,” he said. “We have one across the street that we pay it on. We have little lots all over town, and then the commercial park and then Sunset Ridge that we’re paying property tax on also.”
Before the city can sell the lot to Wingert, Arndorfer said, the city will have to have a public hearing first.