FAIRFIELD — Nine properties once owned by Fairfield’s redevelopment agency – ranging from a former restaurant to vacant downtown land – could be put on the market.
Exactly when the “For Sale” signs go up depends in part on the state Department of Finance. The state must approve the local plan that addresses the former redevelopment agency properties. The plan went to the state in August.
“We don’t have permission to sell anything,” Fairfield Senior Economic Development Project Manager Karl Dumas said.
Not yet. For now, the matter is on the state’s timetable.
Fairfield’s redevelopment agency – which was governed by the City Council – bought the properties since 1976 for economic development efforts. The agency had control over the properties.
But California in 2012 dissolved redevelopment agencies throughout the state. It ordered communities to sell the properties and split the money up among local agencies, in this case Fairfield, Solano County, schools and special districts.
One property targeted for sale is 1.25 acres with the restaurant building that formerly housed Fresh Choice. The site is at 1501 Travis Blvd., near Solano Town Center.
The redevelopment agency bought the 1.25 acres in 1976 and in 1994 leased the land to Fresh Choice. Fresh Choice filed for bankruptcy last year and the agency received possession of the building.
According to a Fairfield report, the property’s estimated market value is $1 million to $1.4 million.
The redevelopment agency also owned 0.08 acres nearby along Interstate 80 that has on it the Solano Town Center electronic message sign. The estimated market value is $22,646 to $26,130. The land has a long-term lease with the mall owners, allowing the sign at a rent of $1 per year.
Also targeted for sale is 0.13 acres at 1026 Texas St. and 0.13 acres at 1046 Texas St. in downtown Fairfield, across the street from the Fairfield Center for Creative Arts. Land values have fallen since the redevelopment agency bought the properties in 2005 and 2006.
For example, the agency paid $455,000 for 1046 Texas St. and the estimated market value today is $60,000 to $72,000, according to the city report. The property had a house on it that Fairfield knocked down. Fairfield used $330,000 in federal Community Development Block Grant funds to help make the purchase, so 72 percent of sale proceeds must go back to the block grant program.
Other properties listed in the report are:
The Fairfield properties are now owned by the Successor Agency to the Redevelopment Agency, which is governed by the City Council.
The Successor Agency’s decisions in turn are subject to a group of community and government representatives that make up what is officially called the Oversight Board for the Successor Agency to the Fairfield Redevelopment Agency. The Oversight Board’s decisions with regard to property are subject to the state Department of Finance.
Fourteen other former redevelopment agency properties are to be transferred to Fairfield for governmental purposes. They include 3 acres with a storm water retention pond at Green Valley Office Park, 2.3 acres at Highway 12 and Beck Avenue that is Highway 12 right of way and 0.15 acres near Green Valley Road and Interstate 80 that is targeted for the expansion of Green Valley Road.
Reach Barry Eberling at 427-6929, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/beberlingdr.