City council approves plan to sell Wurlitzer property

By D. Richard Roth

A plan for the sale of the city-owned Wurlitzer property gained the approval of the DeKalb City Council Monday.

“The City of DeKalb is looking to sell the Wurlitzer property for redevelopment to the highest bidder,” DeKalb Economic Development Director Linda Boyer said.

The Wurlitzer property, located off of State Street in DeKalb, is currently in phase three of development, she said. Phase three of the Wurlitzer Industrial Park consists of nearly 6.26 acres of property and is zoned for heavy industrial development.

The primary reason for the sale of the city-owned property is to facilitate new industrial development within the area, Boyer said.

“This property will be sold in its current condition, with no improvements made by the city prior to the sale,” she said. “The land is not served currently by any public roads or utilities. Any improvements will be made at the sole cost of the purchaser.”

Boyer said the city will accept bids only in excess of $50,000, protecting the city’s initial investment in the property. The average cost of the Wurlitzer property per acre is $7,500, plus the cost of having the property surveyed and plotted.

“Although there are no minimum job requirements for the property, the city will mandate the development of the actual land within two years,” she said.

The purpose of including a right to first refusal in the property sale is to prevent land speculation from occurring, Boyer said.

She said, “We don’t want someone purchasing the property and sitting on it until the price goes up, without developing it.”

The paramount goal of the sale of the Wurlitzer property is to attract bidders who want to combine high private investment with creating skilled labor positions in the DeKalb area, she said.

“All persons wishing to submit proposals for the property should submit them to the city by Friday, Sept. 25,” Boyer said.