MISSOULA - A local developer won approval Thursday to demolish a vacant and dilapidated downtown property over safety concerns ahead of a condominium project planned for construction later this year or next.
Mark Edgell, a member of Edgell Building Inc, plans to construct six condos on the property, which currently includes two vacant buildings. The other building will be demolished at a later date.
“The property that’s under consideration today is one that’s experiencing quite a bit of vandalism and break-ins,” said Annie Gorski, deputy director of the Missoula Redevelopment Agency. “The owner has commented on some real safety concerns. His desire is to demolish this building given the unsafe conditions.”
The Missoula Redevelopment Agency’s board of commissioners gave Edgell approval to proceed with demolition, which qualifies for possible a tax increment reimbursement at a later date.
Public services including sewer, water and power could also be considered for funding assistance. The project in turn would boost the city’s taxable value and bring additional housing to the downtown district – something called for in the Downtown Master Plan.
Such cost reimbursements are authorized by state law.
“We’re waiting on a couple determinations from the city before we proceed with our final plans,” Edgell said. “The goal was to be underway in June or July, but we had some setbacks there. I could see next spring being realistic. We would try to come to the board for the other work ahead of that.”