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Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Oct 21, 2017

Lincoln Court Subdivision groundbreaking Tuesday

Housing units result of years of surveys and research into Fairfield’s needs
May 03, 2017
Photo by: Nicole Major Neighborhood Builders and Developers LLC hold a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday morning at the site of their planned housing development near First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) on South Main Street. The development will be known as the Lincoln Court Subdivision, and could contain 40 or more units by the time its three phases have been completed. Those in attendance at the groundbreaking are, from left, Carl Metcalf, Chris Davis, Debbi Davis, Steve Kramer, Tami Kramer, Charlie Stewart, Harold Dawson, Nancy Stewart and Joshua Laraby.

Neighborhood Builders and Developers LLC broke ground Tuesday on the first phase of its construction of Lincoln Court Subdivision, a series of multi-residential buildings going up between South Gate Subdivision and Pilot Grove Savings Bank.

The subdivision will be built in three phases and will include more than 40 residential units and three acres of commercial property. The development will consist of a combination of four-plexes, triplexes and duplexes. Phase 1 will include construction of 10 units. Phase 2 will include 17 units and construction of a new section of Court Street on the site. Phase 3 will include construction of up to 16 units, and possibly an extension of Libertyville Road to the east.

On April 10, Fairfield City Council passed the final reading of an ordinance to rezone the land on which Lincoln Court Subdivision is being built, paving the way for developers to start moving dirt.

“Our group is very happy with the progress we have made which has lead up to this groundbreaking,” said Steve Kramer, the development group’s project manager. “It has been months in the planning stages and is very rewarding to see it all come to fruition. We have had a significant number of people from the community provide positive feedback about the development and a number of people have already shown interest in a unit thus far.”

Fairfield Economic Development Association director Joshua Laraby said the development group looked in other cities in the region before settling on Fairfield. He said their selection was based on months of researching housing needs, available sites, incentives and local relationships.

“The group has been a pleasure to work with and we are very pleased with their selection of Fairfield,” Laraby said.

Laraby added that attracting new housing to Fairfield has been a priority for a few years, and much work has gone into making it happen. He highlighted a few of the initiatives undertaken to achieve that end:

• In 2014, FEDA, the city of Fairfield and the Fairfield Area Chamber of Commerce helped fund a comprehensive Fairfield Housing Needs Assessment looking at population, demographics, the economy, income, housing stock and other factors.

• Also in 2014, FEDA conducted an open online survey open that engaged the public on housing affordability, quality, availability and preferred housing types.

• FEDA worked with the city on preparing a Housing Tax Increment Housing Policy, which was adopted by city council in December 2014. Tax Increment Financing is a tool that assists with larger developments that require significant infrastructure improvements up front. The tool makes larger developments more feasible while providing a bonus to the city in the form of a broader tax base.

• In 2016, FEDA and the city of Fairfield partnered with the University of Iowa, School of Urban and Regional Planning, to conduct a vacant parcels and infill housing study, to build upon the Housing Needs Assessment by providing research and resources on vacant parcels within the city limits and recommendations for infill development strategies. The study was presented to city council and FEDA, and it has provided recommendations for the city to consider for encouraging infill housing development.

• Later in 2016, Pathfinders Resource Conservation & Development completed a Fairfield Senior Housing Needs and Interests Survey, in tandem with FEDA and the city.

For further information on these matters, visit www.growfairfield.com or contact Laraby at 472-3436.

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