All content, of both the original and this blog, is written from my point of view and is my opinion. I believe it to be accurate at the time it is written. ~ Kyle Prast, Brookfield resident since 1986

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Why push this through without the 5th retailer? Because of possible post April 4 City Hall changes?

On the eve of the primary, the common council approved the addition of 5 buildings at Brookfield Square by a vote of 11 - 2, the MJS_reported. Mitchell's Fish Market will be added to the mall itself.

The remaining four buildings are part of the "Gateway" corner addition which is in the TIF #3 district (approved back in July 2004).

The center "Gateway" retailer remains unknown since Organized Living pulled out of the project, filing for bankruptcy last year. When that happened, the whole corner addition was put on hold. No new retailer has stepped forward yet, but now the mall is anxious to push this project through.

Why? Because they know if Kilkenny is elected, she would like to put an end to TIF #3. "If I'm elected (as mayor), it could be all undone," she stated in the Journal article. The mall owners also know that there are 3 contested aldermanic races that may change the complexion of the Common Council.

Not too difficult to figure out who the mall is backing for mayor! "Speaker has been a strong supporter of the tax district and the mall expansions. CBL officials are contributing money to Speaker's re-election campaign. Speaker said the donations have not played a role in his votes for the mall plans." the MJS reported.

When the original "Gateway" corner addition was first discussed in 2005, I attended the public hearing and Common Council meetings. I spoke_against Brookfield mandating that artificial "Main Street Disneyworld" 2nd story requirement and questioned why this incentive to the mall was being considered when the mall had not yet remodeled. The representatives of the retailers involved were very concerned that their building designs for this Brookfield Square project be consistent with their traditional building styles in other areas of the country. Since Brookfield was requiring that false 2nd story facade, this was altering their usual designs.

IF this corner addition is supposed to be the "Gateway" statement for Brookfield, is it logical to go ahead with it without knowing what that central retailer will be? Whoever it is would like to have their building be recognized as their style.

To me, approval without knowing who it is does not make sense. That is unless you are the mall owners and fear the next mayor will remove all the taxpayer financed infrastructure money.

VK and family have also contributed to Speaker's campaign. I remember from the TIF #3 public hearing in 2004, he was one of the few to speak in favor of the TIF. My husband and I along with about 10 others spoke_against that TIF. I believe VK has some property in that TIF too.
Where is the traffic study for this addition; what is the affect of adding 5 additional retailers?


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