Full steam ahead for Hormel Institute expansionPublished 6:17pm Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Public Works Director Jon Erichson gave an update to the Port Authority board on the expansion, letting the board know much preliminary work has been completed.
City officials have held several project development meetings with Hormel Foundation representatives, and survey work for a preliminary plat of the Institute’s existing property is under way, with the plat expected to go before the City Council in January. Lease agreements between The Hormel Foundation and the Port Authority are being drawn up, as the Foundation owns the land the new expansion will go on but the Port Authority will own the building.
In addition, board members approved an agreement with the Development Corporation of Austin to refinance the Smythe building at Cook Farm Industrial Park. The board also received ownership from the city of Austin of an empty lot at 410 N. Main St., the former home of Top Ten Nails.
City Finance Director Tom Dankert said last Monday the agreement with the DCA stems from loans given by the Port Authority in 2007 totaling $400,000 so the DCA could build the facility, but the DCA is refinancing its first mortgage on the Smythe building to secure lower interest rates on its payments.
City Administrator Jim Hurm, also the executive director of the Port Authority, said the property on Main Street is being shifted to the Port Authority so officials can market and develop it. Community Development Director Craig Hoium said no business or owner has shown interest in the property yet.