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Tax break granted for Moorhead's 8th and Main project

MOORHEAD - The Moorhead City Council approved a nine-year, $750,000 tax break for the flagship project on the corner of 8th Street and Main Avenue in the heart of downtown Moorhead.Cindy Graffeo, economic development director, opened the public h...

A rendering of the mixed-use building proposed for the corner of Eighth Street and Main Avenue in the heart of downtown Moorhead. Special to The Forum
A rendering of the mixed-use building proposed for the corner of Eighth Street and Main Avenue in the heart of downtown Moorhead. Special to The Forum

MOORHEAD - The Moorhead City Council approved a nine-year, $750,000 tax break for the flagship project on the corner of 8th Street and Main Avenue in the heart of downtown Moorhead.

Cindy Graffeo, economic development director, opened the public hearing Monday, Sept. 25, to consider the tax exemption request before the council voted unanimously to approve it with councilman Steve Gehrtz abstaining.

"I have a conflict of interest," Gehrtz said to the other members. He is listed as one of the principals on the project-specific LLC established for the development. Among the others are Todd Berning, Mike Graham and Matt Baasch.

The LLC will own the land and West Fargo-based Five Stone Development will construct a four-story, mixed-use building valued at $5.2 million. It's comprised of commercial and residential space as well as underground parking and a public plaza featuring local art. Each story is about 10,000 square feet.

Five Stone was selected by the council as the preferred developer on May 22. Prior to Monday's exemption, the latest action taken by the council on the development was approving a purchase agreement Aug. 14. The city sold the property to Five Stone for $15,000. However the city's valued purchase price was set at $125,000. Graffeo explained in August that it was discounted to assist Five Stone in building a public plaza.

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Construction is anticipated to kick off Oct.15 with a January 2018 estimated completion date.

Related Topics: MOORHEAD
Kim Hyatt is a reporter for The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead covering community issues and other topics. She previously worked for the Owatonna People's Press where she received the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Dave Pyle New Journalist Award in 2016. Later that year, she joined The Forum as a night reporter and is now part of the investigative team. She's a 2014 graduate of the University of Minnesota Duluth.
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