Along Sturgeon Bay’s waterfront, where the granary once stood, another problem has developed, and locals want it fixed.
A row of dirt piles stand in the lot, blocking waterfront views for many businesses in the area.
“For the whole side of this community, it would be really nice to have a pretty view, not a view of dirt piles,” said Michelle Forrest, who works at one of the businesses with a view of the dirt piles.
Alderwoman Kelly Avenson says that the dirt piles have overstayed their welcome, but were originally brought in with a purpose.
“That property needs to have clean fill to cap it in order to develop it,” Ald. Avenson explained to Local Five. “So there’s some issues with the environmental portion of the land.”
The city had thought a waterfront hotel was set to develop on the property, but after a series of issues, the development never moved forward, and the dirt piles remain.
Now that the city is ready to move ahead and find a new purpose for the land, the issue of who the dirt belongs to is halting their removal.
“All parties weren’t clear on who that dirt essentially belong to,” Ald. Avenson explained. “So now we’re in this process of finding out who actually owns those dirt piles.”
At the last Sturgeon Bay City Council meeting, a plan was made to establish that ownership. The three involved parties: a construction company, the developer, and the city have all been given a 28-day notice. After that time has passed, the council hopes to have enough information about the ownership of the piles to do something about them.
Until then, residents and visitors are stuck looking at those piles of dirt.
“As far as businesses are concerned, I would say that it doesn’t help business,” said Ald. Avenson. “It also, in my personal opinion, doesn’t look good just sitting there, growing weeds, for future developers either.”