November Meeting Notes
Meeting started at 7:01pm
· Approval of Minutes
o July 2018 meeting notes:
Steve Barry mentioned that, per July notes, he attempted to purchase – at his own expense - an additional roll-cart from Refuse Division but was told that this program is no longer available; motion to amend July 2018 meeting minutes with this note by Robert Morrissey, seconded by Lesley Wilson; minutes with above amendment approved by members
o September 2018 meeting notes:
Motion to approve as submitted by Charlie White, seconded by Jim Howard; minutes approved by members
· Community Reports:
o Alderman Scott Ogilvie (24th Ward)
A resident spoke out about concerns that had been voiced at previous ENA meetings that she feels are not being taken care of quickly enough. Her concerns included drivers speeding down Magnolia Ave between McCausland and Abbott Place and a boat she feels is blocking the alley at 6138 Magnolia.
· Ogilvie responded by saying he had made request to the city to install speed bumps on Magnolia. There is a review and approval process, which takes time, but also it is unlikely that Streets Dept would install speed bumps during winter months.
· Matt Sisul acknowledged that he received complaints last week about the boat & trailer illegally parked on Southwest Ave. ENA executive board members worked with police to quickly get the trailer ticketed for towing. This is the first he was aware that the boat & trailer were now blocking alley access. He promised to look into the matter and try to get this new issue addressed quickly. Matt offered anyone with these complaints to contact him directly so he can help residents followup with issues they believe are not being addressed in a timely manner.
Discussions are once again taking place at City Hall regarding a brand new proposal to bring a Major League Soccer (MLS) team to St. Louis. This time the Taylor family (Enterprise) who are totally different investors than the previous attempt, are willing to invest $348 Million into the process. The city would need to acquire the property and authorize ticket sales use tax. Additional conditions:
· MLS still would need to select St. Louis as a location
· St. Louis city would need to buy property to build a stadium from the State of Missouri.
Q: What is going on with the current stadium, America Center, and why would it not be able to be used for soccer?
A: It is much too large and MLS requires smaller outdoor stadiums (without dome roofs).
o KaJauna Thomas (NSO, 24th Ward)
Not present at meeting
o Officer Don Veile (2nd District)
Not present at meeting but discussion still ensued.
· Resident concerned about possible drug trafficking on Hermitage Ave. Reminder that suspected drug activity should be reported to police, by calling 911.
· Resident concerned with a street light at 7131 Canterbury. The light flickers, changes colors and sometimes stays off for multiple days. Matt Sisul will report issue to Citizens Service Bureau and to Streets Department.
· Special Guests – Brian Minges (Advantes Group); Jeff Hyatt (Trio Creative); Adrienne Nienkamp (Advantes Group); Dave Sweeney (Lewis Rice)
o RE: Wilkinson School Redevelopment:
Advantes Group is scheduled to close on the property on December 18th.
Development proposal includes a historic rehabilitation of existing school building into 37 apartments: 2 studios, 29 one-bedrooms, and 6 two-bedrooms. The renovated space will also include a workout room, rooftop patios and grade level patios with dog park and include 58 parking spots.
A new ancillary structure including more apartments (8 one-bedrooms on upper floors, 4 apartments on each floor) and office space for Advantes Group on main/ground floor, who is planning to relocate their main offices to this location in Ellendale.
Advantes Group will self-manage the property. They have extensive experience with several other properties in the City (Laclede’s Landing), including former school buildings (Lafayette School in Soulard, Sherman School in Shaw). They do not contract their services to other property owners. Their leasing & management staff is used exclusively for Advantes Group rental properties.
Estimated construction time is 14 months, with plans to start in the summer of 2019.
o Q: Will there be an elevator in the building.
A: No, however ADA-accessible units will be provided on 1st floor of school building.
o Q: Will there be alterations to Arsenal side of building.
A: No, the plan is to keep historical integrity of the front façade while adding new lighting and landscaping.
o Q: Where will new building be located? Are these different properties?
A: The two buildings and the parking area will all be located on same parcel of land.
o Q: Concerned about drainage. Will there be work done to manage water? A: Yes the parking lot will be re-pitched to move water away. MSD will review & approve site plan to help assure proper flow.
o Q: What is the average occupancy on other Advantes properties?
o Q: What is the average lease time?
A: Most leases are for one year however they will do some 6 months and 3 month leases as well with renewal options available to tenant.
o Q: Is the city giving any TIF’s on property?
A: No TIFs are being explored at presented. However, a request for tax abatement is being considered.
· Ald Ogilvie added that the property currently does not generate property tax because it is owned by St Louis Public Schools. Whenever the property is purchased, the building will be taxed to the new owner at the rate it is assessed at that time. Tax abatement would freeze the assessment at that rate for some period of time, depending upon the number of years the City provides. But regardless of whether or not tax abatement is offered, the new building owner will be paying more real estate taxes than the current building owner (SLPS) paying $0
· Ogilvie also added that the City (St Louis Development Corporation) now reviews tax abatement applications through a revenue projection model to determine what level of tax abatement is necessary for the proposed project. The results of that analysis will determine the maximum number of years that the City will authorize real estate taxes to be abated. An additional reminder that tax abatement does not mean “tax-free.”
o Q: Will any of the apartments be subsidized rents? (Section 8, or other)?
A: No, the rent on all units will be market rate.
o Digital copies of the proposal including site maps, visuals and design will be uploaded to ENA website as soon as available.
· Board Report
o Treasurer’s Report (Joe Nea)
Starting balance $359.46 (September). $30 dues received (1 resident, 1 business). Bank maintenance fees of $12 ($6/month). Current balance is $377.46
Jacqi Kamp made a motion to open new banking account at US Bank: free checking, no minimum balance, no maintenance fees. Then ENA would close its account with Citizens National Bank. Jim Howard seconded the motioned. Motion approved by members. ENA executive board will make appropriate arrangements to open this account.
o Housing Committee Update (Matt Sisul):
Leslie White will be stepping down as chair, but will remain as committee member. Matt Sisul thanked her for her 2+ years of service.
Matt Sisul reminded members that the housing committee is an open committee, meaning that anyone may volunteer (not elected or appointed). ENA encourages volunteers to participate.
New Housing Committee Members:
· Nathaniel Kemp: motion to confirm by Matt Sisul; seconded by Mike Bastine; approved by members
· Linda Boyd-Shell: motion to confirm by Matt Sisul; seconded by Irene Smith; approved by all members
Matt Sisul asked the housing committee to select its new chairperson prior to the next ENA meeting in January
Q: What is the current situation with the house across from Slay Park at 7042 Canterbury?
A: Building permit was closed previously due to inactivity. Earlier this year the property was referred to housing court because it was vacant & unsecured, there was very tall grass/weeds, and open storage of construction debris (left out in front yard). Owner since addressed those concerns so that building permit could be reopened. However, work again appears to be delayed.
· Matt Sisul has been working with Ellendale building inspector (Dave Penick) about this home for several months. There is a rumor that a new building inspector has been assigned to the area. Matt will coordinate with him as necessary.
o UPDATE: Matt Sisul has contacted Building Division. John Sell is a new building inspector, but has been assigned to northern half of the 24th Ward. Dave Penick is still the building inspector for the Ellendale neighborhood.
Q: What is the current situation with the proposed construction of three homes at 2740 Ellendale?
· A: Aleto Construction is still planning to build three homes on this site. However, they have not been able to finance the “spec-homes” plan (build first, then find homebuyers). So the project is currently delayed until buyers are found.
o Matt Sisul added that he and Jacqi Kamp have been communicating with Patty Aleto about property conditions (grass cutting, fallen tree removal). If anyone notices poor property conditions, please contact either Matt or Jacqi who can communicate neighbor concerns directly to the Aleto management team.
Q: What is the situation with house at 6914 Southwest that burned down?
· A: Property was sold to an individual known to purchase vacant lots (including several from City’s Land Reutilization Authority) for construction of new, single-family homes. However, owner rarely responds to any neighborhood communication, and has not returned Ald Ogilvie inquiries.
No new business
· Meeting adjourned 8:06pm