Source: Sherman Publications

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Weckle offers to buy village lands for $35K

by CJ Carnacchio

February 01, 2012

Oxford Village started out looking for a real estate broker to list some vacant municipal-owned properties and ended up finding a potential buyer.

Council last week voted 3-0 to refer two purchase proposals for 23 Stanton St. and 27 Pleasant St. to the village manager and village attorney for review, recommendations and further negotiations if necessary.

Local developer Dave Weckle, who owns Valley Building and Repair Co. in Oxford, offered to purchase 23 Stanton St. for $15,000 and 27 Pleasant St. for $20,000.

According to Oakland County, the true cash value of the Stanton property is $20,500, while the Pleasant property's value ranges from $24,500 to $37,500 depending on the use. Village Manager Joe Young noted those values are not what they would actually sell for today.

Weckle is looking to combine the Stanton property with other parcels he owns adjacent to it in order to build a mixed use development. He's proposing to use the Pleasant St. property as a parking lot and possibly turn part of it into a small park.

The 23 Stanton St. property is a 0.171-acre parcel that's currently zoned as Central Business District-Transition (or C-1). Weckle told council he's been acquiring property around the Stanton property for the last eight to 10 years with an eye toward someday combining and developing it.

"Things are getting a little better (with regard to the economy) and I would like to move forward with that area," he said.

Weckle told council it's "very unlikely" the village's Stanton property, which contains 7,452 square feet, would ever be used as the site for a new home because it's too large of a lot.

He said it's also "very unlikely" it would be developed for commercial use because "by the time you provide parking, there would be no room for a building."

Combining the village's Stanton property with Weckle's other parcels would allow for a mixed use development. He noted how he also owns other properties in that area on both E. Burdick and Broadway streets.

"I have enough space to actually put a parking structure in," he told council.

The 27 Pleasant St. property is a 0.43-acre oddly-shaped piece of land located on the west side of Pleasant St., across from Davison St. It's adjacent to the Polly Ann Trail and situated between Dayton and Lafayette streets.

The 18,744-square-foot parcel formerly housed the village's Department of Public Works facilities, which were demolished in 2003. The eastern portion (or front) of the Pleasant property is zoned industrial, while the western (or rear) portion is zoned for single-family residential dwellings.

Weckle is proposing to turn part of the Pleasant property into parking for Polly Ann Trail users and whoever ends up buying and developing the neighboring 33 Pleasant St. property, which is currently zoned industrial and is for sale.

He noted that however the 33 Pleasant property ends up being developed, it doesn't contain sufficient space for parking. In order to be "viable" that property will need the parking that 27 Pleasant could offer. "The best use for that piece (27 Pleasant) is parking, whoever owns it," Weckle told council.

In addition to parking, Weckle proposed turning the rear triangular portion of 27 Pleasant into a "pocket park" with amenities for Polly Ann Trail users such as a small gazebo, picnic tables and a place to park bicycles.

If for some reason the parking lot/park idea doesn't pan out, Weckle noted he could combine the 27 Pleasant property with 25 Pleasant St., which his son owns, and build either condominiums or apartments.

Kathleen Sanchez, an associate broker with Coldwell Banker Shooltz Realty who's been working with Weckle for years, spoke very highly of him to council.

"I think Dave's track record of workmanship and pride in what he does here to help this community is probably foremost of anybody that I've worked with," she said.