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Local

Sycamore council to consider testing for South Avenue platform removal

Sycamore City Manager Brian Gregory talks during the City Council meeting Monday night.
Sycamore City Manager Brian Gregory talks during the City Council meeting Monday night.

SYCAMORE – The Sycamore City Council will determine if they will move forward on one of the most significant remaining tax increment financing district projects before the city’s only TIF district expires.

The City Council will vote on whether they want to pay a contractor to conduct some testing that will help the city determine whether they want to take the platform that’s at the former Harvester Square site on South Avenue, which now is the home of Blumen Gardens, down to street level.

City Manager Brian Gregory said the platform has No Further Remediation status, which means the city isn’t obligated to make additional adjustments to the property, but requires that the concrete barrier on the raised platform area be maintained and the property used for commercial or industrial purposes.

However, Gregory also said the platform area is reducing the full functionality of the property and isn’t aesthetically pleasing.

“Right now, that is an obstacle to sell it and for returning it to private development,” he said.

The nearly $20,000 quote from Geothink LLC, that will be up for city council consideration Monday would include drilling, testing and evaluating the materials to help conduct a cost-benefit analysis that will determine next steps in the potential platform removal. Gregory said the city would use TIF funds to finance the testing.

Gregory said the TIF district was established in 2000 to mainly address failing industrial property between South and Park avenues and currently raises about $90,000 a year in increment.

He said TIF funds recently have been used for the Depot, or the DeKalb County Community Foundation building, and water main work on Park Avenue when the street was reconstructed.

The City Council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday at the Sycamore Center, 308 W. State St.

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