CITY OF MENNO DEVELOPING PROPERTY EAST OF CARE CENTER
JEREMY WALTNER – PUBLISHER
The city of Menno is continuing with plans to develop lots for housing immediately east of the Menno-Olivet Care Center.
Mayor Darrell Mehlhaf told The Courier early this week that the city is providing infrastructure for 2 ½ blocks on the east side of Menno. That includes utility hookups going in yet this fall, with the construction of the roadway to follow.
Alfalfa Street will be extended to the south and connect with Juniper going west. The development will provide new space for approximately a dozen homes.
This is a badly needed project, Mehlhaf said.
“Houses sell very, very fast. That quality house is really hard to come by, and building a high-dollar house is difficult because the lot sizes are so small.”
This will give people options, he said.
The land that will be developed has been owned as part of a larger parcel by the Menno-Olivet Care Center, and the Menno Area Development Corporation has entered into a purchase agreement to buy the portion of the property that will be used for housing.
Mehlhaf said there may be an opportunity for additional development in the future. Lots are expected to be for sale sometime next year.
The city of Menno is also moving its shop into new quarters on the former Hansen-Mueller elevator property just off Railway. The Menno City Council authorized the purchase of the property in the amount of $275,000 at its October meeting.
Mehlhaf said the city was in need of a centralized location for its equipment, and the elevator property, which hasn’t been in use since the early part of 2020, fit the bill. While the city’s primary needs are the two buildings that sit on the property, the sale included the full two lots.
“Location was a big part of it, also,” Mehlhaf said of the appeal. “If we were considering building a building of that size it would have to be somewhere on the perimeter of town. That would work, but this serves the city even better because it’s only about half-a-block away from the watertower and all the controls.”
The city hopes to have everything moved to the new location by the end of the month.
“Now we just need to get somebody to utilize the elevator,” he said. “I’m pretty optimistic we can find somebody to come in and use it for commerce.”
He also acknowledged it could take some time.
“We’ll take a couple of years to get somebody in it if that’s what it takes,” Mehlhaf said.