RC banks on bang for buck land deal

By Jon Tatting—

The city of Rush City is hoping a land deal worth a single buck will generate a boost to the downtown business scene.

The city council, meeting in unusual form March 1 at the high school library, agreed to sell the city-owned property at 425 S. Dana Ave. to the St. Croix River Education District for $1, a nominal consideration that is authorized under state law.

The council’s approval is based on SCRED following through with plans to construct a new office building in place of the now demolished structures that sat on the property. The district has leased that land for some years. Plastech Corporation conveyed the property by donation to the city in 1986.

Throughout the past year, councilors have spoken in favor of keeping the business and its 50-plus employees based in Rush City. SCRED is also partial to the city because of its location, which sits near the center of the agency’s six member school districts of Chisago Lakes Area, East Central, Hinckley-Finlayson, North Branch, Pine City and Rush City.

In other action, the council:

• Tabled a decision on the development contract of the Rush Creek Bluff First Addition, which is planned to be occupied by a new Dollar General store just east of the Holiday Stationstore. Councilors will review several revisions and may take action on the contract at the March 12 council meeting.

• Approved a payment of $91,987 to Doenz Excavating for demolishing the city-owned SCRED building, 425 S. Dana Ave.

• Approved a payment of $1,852 to the Chisago County Public Works/Highway Department for the city’s portion of work on the turnback project.

• Acknowledged the city’s invitation to a proposed meeting on the Chisago County ARMER Subscriber’s Group, which relates to the 800 MHz radio system upgrade. The group meeting is proposed from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, March 15 in room 131 at the county government center.

• Approved, at its March 12 meeting, four temporary signs — each listing the names of local businesses, with arrows pointing to their respective locations — to be posted around the 4th Street road project area to help visitors find the downtown area. Councilor Al Hoffman solely voted against because the same was not done for businesses last fall when the project started. However, it was clarified that signage had never been requested at that time.

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