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Eau Claire City Council takes up former fire station, roads

(WEAU)
Published: Feb. 25, 2020 at 10:14 PM CST
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In Tuesday's Eau Claire City Council meeting, the council approved a resolution supporting a bus shuttle from Eau Claire to Tomah's Amtrak station.

Soon, the former Eau Claire Fire Station No. 10 at the corner of Hastings Way and Birch Street will no longer be vacant.

Tuesday, the Eau Claire City Council approved a resolution authorizing the sale of the building to SVEE Metalworks, Inc.

"At this point I think we generated as much interest as we're going to see in that building. Obviously it's a great location, a lot of visibility. We feel like the price that was offered, and that we've accepted, is fair," said Eau Claire City Council President Terry Weld.

In 2017, the land was estimated at $365,000 in a fair market value.

But in Aug. 2019, asbestos was found in multiple areas of building.

There were two proposals to buy the facility, SVEE Metalworks, Inc. offered $225,000 which the council thought was the best offer.

The plan is to relocate Outlaw Auto Sales, LLC to the Hastings Way location, and add detailing services and office spaces.

The council is also looking towards the future, approving a $2 million plan to replace utilities and pavement on a stretch of Oxford Avenue and Maxon Street.

City officials see this section as the entrance of the Cannery District, which they say is starting to grow.

"The last 50, 60, 70 years this portion of Eau Claire, and Oxford Avenue was Highway 12 at one point, so it was an important transportation corridor, and now with that part of the city being redeveloped and more energy spilling over from downtown in that area. We felt the transportation into that area, whether it be on foot or on bike or in a car kind of greets you and creates a gateway as you access the future businesses and development," said Eau Claire City Engineer Dave Solberg.

Solberg says that stretch is one of the worst in the city, and that they were waiting to make improvements until development started to take off.

Construction is expected to being sometime this year or next spring.

Also Tuesday, the council approved the city's Renewable Energy Action Plan for the next ten years, which looks to guide Eau Claire towards its goal of becoming carbon neutral and run on 100 percent renewable energy by the year 2050.