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FD Council moves on fun center, zoning

December 18, 2012
By BILL SHEA ( , Messenger News

Some local government help for a planned entertainment center on the east side of Fort Dodge was finalized by the City Council Monday.

Council members voted unanimously to give final approval to the use of tax increment financing to reimburse a developer for the estimated $1.2 million cost of extending First Avenue South east of 32nd Street.

The extended street will support a privately owned family entertainment center that planners expect to open next summer near the intersection of First Avenue South and 32nd Street.

The center will have a variety of indoor and outdoor attractions, including go-carts, miniature golf, a mini bowling alley and video games. It will be owned and operated by TJK Enterprises, of Fort Dodge. Tim and Kellie Guderian, who won a $200.8 million Powerball lottery prize six years ago, are key figures in the company.

Tax increment financing occurs when increased property tax revenue from a designated area is set aside to be reinvested in that area.

In other business Monday, the council gave preliminary approval to a new zoning law that would allow buildings along part of Fifth Avenue South to be up to 80 feet from the front property line if designated pedestrian pathways and some aesthetic improvements are provided.

Placing a building 80 feet from the front property line would create space for two rows of parking.

The proposed change was requested by developers who would prefer to have parking in the front of the buildings.

''This is a good ordinance,'' said Mayor Matt Bemrich. ''Hopefully this will help the businesses that are trying to develop on the corridor.''

The measure must be approved by the council two more times to become law.

Also on Monday, the council approved a 2.5 percent raise for management and non-union city employees. The raise goes into effect Jan. 1.

Council members approved the hiring of Cory McFarland, of Story City, as a firefighter. He is a paramedic with Van Diest Medical Center in Webster City.



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