DDA discusses depot
By Stephanie Johns
A depot discussion was the focus of the Downtown Development Authority of Madison (DDA) last Thursday morning.
DDA member Everett Royal provided an update regarding the historic train depot project.
He said that they still have not received a bill of sale from Norfolk-Southern for the Continental of Georgia depot. The DDA has $25,000 budgeted for this, he said.
City Planning Director Monica Callahan noted that they have $50,000 in their existing budget for the Urban Renewal Plan and that this is where the money will come from.
Royal said they need to answer such questions as how to stabilize the depot, what it will look like after renovation, plans for long-term use, and ownership. He added that they must locate a road to access it and work through that process.
“I think one goal we should have, we ought not have a management role in the building,” he said.
Royal proposed an agreement between the DDA and Historic Madison-Morgan Foundation (HMMF) for this project.
David Land from the HMMF was present to share details of how the two groups might work together. He noted that they were willing to provide $20,000 that they may not be reimbursed for towards the depot project.
Callahan suggested the two groups create a working committee in which the DDA provides a couple of members, the HMMF could provide a couple of members, and someone from the Madison Historic Preservation Commission could be asked to participate.
In other news:
* Secretary/Treasurer Ben Whidby reported that the three loans they had with United Bank have been renewed as two loans. Two West Washington Street properties and 203 to 209 Bull St. are on one loan and 787 College Drive property is on the other.
• DDA Counsel Lee Abney said the closing on the Ervin Enterprises, LLC properties located on West Jefferson Street went well. He added that he was comfortable that it has been conveyed to the DDA now.
• Callahan shared the annual report for the Downtown Urban Redevelopment Area (DURA). She noted that the report covers the group’s first 18 months of operation. They have completed or begun work on 17 projects.
Printed in the December 27, 2012 edition