4th Street parking lawsuit: Landowner files response, both sides now face Friday deadline for proposed ruling

cropped 10-21-2019 juan sells demolition IMG_7637
The 4th Street parking garage is on its way to complete demolition. This photo was taken Monday, Oct. 21. Whether the 222 S. Walnut building that houses JuanSells.com eventually joins the pile of rubble will be up to  the court after proposed orders are filed by the two sides by this Friday, Oct. 25. (Dave Askins/Beacon)

The Bloomington city council’s insistence on the inclusion of ground floor commercial space in the proposed replacement for the 4th Street parking garage is a factor in one of the arguments a landowner is making, in an attempt to ward off the city’s attempt to take some real estate through eminent domain action.

A response brief from attorneys for landowner Juan Carlos Carrasquel was filed by last Friday, the deadline set by the judge after oral arguments were heard on Oct. 7.

The central legal argument in the case is whether the inclusion of ground-floor commercial space disqualifies the parking garage project as a public use.

The Oct. 18 brief reprises arguments made at the Oct. 7 hearing, but brings into clearer focus how the city council’s insistence on the commercial space fits into those arguments.

The landowner was given until Friday to file a response to a memorandum the city had filed before the Oct. 7 hearing. The next milestone is the case will be this Friday, Oct. 25, when both sides are due to submit their proposed orders to the court. Continue reading “4th Street parking lawsuit: Landowner files response, both sides now face Friday deadline for proposed ruling”

Sawtooth tech district parking garage with 379 parking spaces gets Bloomington plan commission OK

Based on the city plan commission’s unanimous recommendation Monday night, downtown Bloomington will be getting roughly 250 more parking spaces by the end of 2020.

Winning approval from commissioners was a three-story, 369379-space parking structure that the city will build on a wedge of land in downtown’s technology district. The site is flanked by the B-Line trail on the west and the Showers building, which houses city hall and CFC Business Plaza, on the east. The Beacon counted more than a hundred parking spaces in the surface lot currently at that location.

Last year, on Dec. 13, the city council approved the $10.96 million worth of tax increment revenue bonds from the Bloomington Redevelopment District that will be used to pay for the structure. Continue reading “Sawtooth tech district parking garage with 379 parking spaces gets Bloomington plan commission OK”

Hoffmann to helm plan commission just until end of month, a chance UDO will wrap up by then

For his last vote at a regular meeting of Bloomington’s plan commission, Joe Hoffmann joined in the unanimous decision of the other commissioners Monday night, giving approval to the city’s proposed new three-story, 379-space parking garage to be built just west of city hall.

Hoffmann has served 32 years on the plan commission, which is the city’s land use and development policy body. Mayor John Hamilton used the commission’s agenda slot for reports and communications near the start of the meeting to issue a proclamation declaring Sept. 9, 2019 as Joe Hoffmann Day in Bloomington. Hamilton pegged the number of plan commission meetings Hoffmann had attended at around 380.

Hoffmann will serve through September. That means he still has possibly four more commission meetings to attend—they’re special meetings to conduct hearings and to make a recommendation to the city council on a new, revised unified development ordinance (UDO). And he might get a chance to vote on the final UDO recommendation that’s sent to the city council, if those four meetings wrap up the commission’s work on the UDO. Continue reading “Hoffmann to helm plan commission just until end of month, a chance UDO will wrap up by then”