Neumann Land Development wants to host the Parade of Homes at their Highlander Estates location in Mequon, but they may require some city assistance in amending the current developer agreement to make that happen.

After some back and forth suggestions between commissioners and the developer at a Sept. 12 plan commission meeting, the item was tabled to allow staff to take the feedback and bring the item back in October incorporating some of the discussion.

The current development agreement between Neumann and the city says all improvements to the property must be completed before the final plot approval to avoid any risks to the city.  For the Parade of Homes to happen, building permits are needed by the beginning of January and Neumann Land Development expressed some concern with being able to meet that deadline.

Neumann is seeking an amendment to its development agreement to get final plat approval for the first addition of Highlander Estates. The first addition includes 30 lots for a 111-lot single-family subdivision located between Swan Road and Wauwatosa Road south of Brighton Ridge and Knightsbridge.  Assistant Director of Community Development Jac Zader said the developer has agreed to a 125-percent letter of credit to get the amendment.

However, upon review, staff recommended the plan commission deny the request as they believe the developer has sufficient time to complete what's needed by the deadline. Zader said if it was approved, the current agreement would likely have to be void, not just amended, and a new one created.

Kevin Anderson of Neumann Land Development said the company could possibly make the deadline, but it wasn't assured.  He said they wouldn't want to get prepared for the event and advertising it only to find out when the deadline arrives it couldn't happen.

"We want to guarantee a parade site," Anderson said.

He added it would be acceptable to Neumann Land Development to hold some lots from being sold for a time to get the approval for the request.  Anderson said it would be an agreement between Neumann and the city.  Zader said he wasn't sure of the legality of such an agreement, but that he would check with the city attorney.

Mayor Dan Abendroth seemed to be leaning toward helping the developer but wanted to put everything in writing, not just as a handshake agreement for a few points.

"I think staff would like to see our agreement put into a new development agreement," Abendroth said.

Alderman Robert Strzelczyk agreed it would need to be written up, saying otherwise he wouldn't be comfortable putting taxpayers at risk.

Zader suggested if the city does approve the developer's request it is contingent on the Parade of Homes coming to Mequon.  He said staff would also like the developer to get as many of the improvements done before the original deadline as possible, even if a new agreement is put in place.

Strzelczyk agreed, calling the parade condition "a clean request."  He also suggested a cash escrow be added to the agreement as well to lessen the risk to the city.

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