Tuesday is the first of two big committee meetings this week for the city of La Crosse.
One project on the Judiciary and Administration (J&A) Committee’s agenda is to begin the process for an affordable housing development on Fourth Street.
The J&A Committee meets at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Southside Neighborhood Center (map) and online (here). To speak in person, arrive early and sign up. Online attendees will need to email ([email protected]) or call (608-789-7510) the City Clerk.
“Proposing to build (64) units — 52 are going to be affordable units with, I think, about 17 set aside for the homeless population and then about 35 lower to middle-income, and then 13 of those will be market-rate units,” city council member Chris Woodard described Monday on La Crosse Talk PM.
Back in late July, Cinnaire Solutions won a bid over two other groups for what Woodard said was a $15.8 million housing project. On the agenda Tuesday is what’s been on multiple agendas over the past couple months — zoning changes. That will allow for Cinnaire’s four-story residential building, which will take up 14 parcels on Mississippi Street, 4th Street and Jackson Street.
The city has had to deal with a bunch of zoning changes of late, and it seems as though neighbors have taken the “Get off my lawn mentality” to them. This one, however, seems to be going smooth in the Washburn and Powell-Poage-Hamilton neighborhoods.
“Very impressed with how well Cinnaire is working with the neighbors and both neighborhood associations,” Woodard said. “They really want to hear our input and are taking that to heart.”
And that, he added, is the key to why things have gone so well up to this point.
“Some of these project, maybe, could have gone better if, from the beginning, the people proposing the projects reached out to the neighbors around and really got their input,” Woodard said, “rather than plopping down this box and saying, ‘Hey this is what we’re going to do,’ and then through the process they say, ‘Oh maybe we should listen to them.’”
Woodard added he thinks, if everything passes committees and councils, Cinnaire could be starting to build in 2023.
Other things on the J&A agenda include another zoning change for Bethany Lutheran Homes to allow for a new, four-story building. Monday, the City Plan Commission decided to put that decision off for another month while neighbors negotiate with Bethany.
The committee will also vote on whether to expand the city’s Racial Equity Team from seven to 14 employee members.
Also, Kwik Trip would like a conditional use permit at 2308 Rose Street — in front of Harbor Freight — to demolish some buildings to assist in selling the property for future development. The property is valued at $765,000.
Lastly, the committee is paving the way for the final steps in redistricting, adjusting aldermanic district boundaries.
“In October, the Council adopted a ward plan creating 26 wards and maintaining coterminous district boundaries with the County Supervisory Districts,” City Clerk Nikki Elsen stated. “This ordinance adopts the 13 newly drawn aldermanic district boundaries based on that ward plan. Once adopted, the boundaries will be codified in the La Crosse Municipal Code.”