Waterloo attracting business interest - Republic-Times | News

Waterloo attracting business interest

By on October 3, 2012 at 10:35 am

Commercial development was the prevailing theme of Monday night’s meeting of the Waterloo City Council.

First, aldermen approved the site plan for a proposed new 9,100-square-foot Dollar General store to be built at the former site of Diehl’s Florist at 717 North Market Street.

City zoning administrator Jim Nagel said plans call for a building similar to the Dollar General that recently opened in Columbia. The sale of this property is expected to become official on Oct. 12, Nagel said.

Following that theme, the council also approved a revised final plat for Waterloo Commons Lot 1, which is currently grassy area north of the Schnucks parking lot across from the new Dairy Queen on Marketplace Drive.

City officials noted that this measure signifies possible activity.

“I’m assuming they have a potential purchaser,” Nagel told the council, referring to commercial real estate development and management company The DESCO Group.

Nagel added that the lot in question would be ideal for a retail store or restaurant, but he had no idea of what future plans are in store.

On a related note, Alderman Steve Notheisen provided a rundown of the city’s presentation on the Waterloo Commons development during a “Brokers Open House” event held Thursday in Columbia. Other presentations included Rock City in Valmeyer and the Admiral Trost development in Columbia.

Organized by the Monroe County Economic Development Council, the open house was designed to introduce regional real estate leaders to local development opportunities.

Notheisen said recent projects such as the Monroe County Surgical Center, Zimmer Park, Garden Place and Legacy Place help boost Waterloo’s profile for prospective brokers.

“We’re fortunate that people are investing in Waterloo,” he said.

Mayor Tom Smith said the city’s recent partnership with consulting, market research and development firm The Retail Coach has yielded plenty of statistics and talking points to attract future business.

A “retail trade area map” created by the firm shows that Waterloo consistently draws revenue from residents as far north as Dupo and as far south as Evansville and Prairie du Rocher.

As for the city gaining new businesses, Smith said “it all means more sales tax and revenue” for the city, as well as “less reasons to have to go to South County.”

Smith and other city officials will be attending an International Council of Shopping Centers conference in Chicago this week to further promote commercial development opportunities in Waterloo.

In other city news, Waterloo Police Chief Jim Trantham told the Republic-Times on Thursday that his department placed one of its officers on leave earlier in the week. He assured that this was not done for disciplinary reasons.

Mayor Smith added that the leave will be unpaid, and that the city cannot comment further due to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. Smith added there may be another similar action taken soon within the department.

The council approved the mayor’s appointment of Dennis Bauers to the Board of Police Commissioners for a three-year term, and re-appointed Earl Chambers to the same board for a three-year term.

The council also approved the appointment of Jennifer Mechler to the Library Board for a three-year term, and re-appointed Kenneth Perkins to the same board for a three-year term.

Alderman Clyde Heller told the Republic-Times that a group of 22 from Waterloo’s sister city of Porta Westfalica, Germany, will be arriving Saturday night for a brief four-day stay.

The German visitors will take a trolley tour of Waterloo on Sunday, touring Peterstown House, Bellefontaine House and the History Museum before attending a welcome dinner Sunday night at Mystic Oak.

The group will tour the Boeing facility in St. Louis and visit St. Charles, Mo., on Monday before taking in a hayride and country style dinner in Renault.

On Tuesday, the Germans will visit  Ste. Genevieve, Mo.,  and have dinner at Lisa’s Market Street Grille in Prairie du Rocher.

They will leave for the airport to return home on Wednesday morning.

Teryn Schaefer

Teryn was born and raised in Waterloo, growing up watching local sports and Mon-Clair baseball. She is a graduate of the University of Missouri Journalism School and loves cheering on her Tigers any chance she gets.