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Is Marshalls coming to Mason City… or not?

Marshalls ... or not?  Would a massive tax break from people of Mason City still be in affect if Marshalls pulls out?
Marshalls … or not? Would a massive tax break from people of Mason City still be in affect if Marshalls pulls out?

NIT – The rumors have been there now, for weeks, but no one is confirming anything: Mason City may not be getting a Marshalls Department Store, after all.

A “big box” has been under construction, just west of Kohl’s Department Store, in the Indianhead Shopping District now for months.  NIT reported in August that a Marshall’s department store is slated to be completed in 2014 and will be located west of Kohl’s department store in the Willow Creek Crossing Development. The store will be about 22,000 square feet in size and cost $2 million to build.

The developer, North Iowa Growth, LLC, will receive economic development grants of tax increment (TIF) – totaling $480,000 over 7 years – for increases in property value associated only with the 22,000 square foot building – that may now be without a tenant.   (A Joann Fabric store is leaving the Southport Shopping Center to that area.)

In August, City Hall officials said they believed “that the Marshall’s store will be a ‘catalyst’ for the rest of the shopping center, ‘which will stabilize the current retail mix and draw new retailers to the center as well as new restaurants to the lots fronting Highway 122.'”

NIT has received a number of notes from readers alluding to Marshall’s pulling out of the deal, and rumors about it have popped up all over social media.  Marshall’s corporate office has not yet confirmed this, however.  At the same time, the official website for Marshalls says there are no “grand openings” planned in Iowa at this time.  No hiring notices have been advertised for the store, either.

One person wrote to NIT, saying, “Marshalls is not coming, they changed their mind.”  The source also said that “construction has slowed down.  You will notice that they are not getting much done there, go see for yourself.”

City Hall will not confirm any of this, so far.  If true, this would be the second major development that city officials trumpeted last year – leading up to city elections –  that fell through.  NIT readers may recall that a major hotel was reported last year to be on the way to downtown Mason City, only to be reported in recent weeks that the deal was never close to happening.

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Population-wise, Mason City is a dying city in a dying county, in a state that is dying outside of a few urban pockets.

Along those lines, I think a more suitable outlet for the building would be a mega Dollar Store.

That would be a perfect spot for an old navy

I think the mall would be a better place for an Old Navy and as far as Sears/Southport, that area is d e a d! Everything on West side but it would be very nice to get some new stores in Southbridge to keep it going. As far as Willet… Farewell.

I was told that Kohls has an ongoing contact that a major comparable retailer cannot be within so many feet of there stores and they decided to enforce it. Why this wasn’t addressed BEFORE they started construction, I have no idea! What now…

John, I do believe you are correct. Why then target City Hall when it,s the Store corporations making the decisions. In this day and age, everyone is blaming someone else. If I were Kohl’s, I’d raise a stink also. Next door? Give me a break. They just should have spoke up,sooner and that,s where I fault them. I’d still like to see a Marshall’s or TJ Maxx here. The sooner the better. How about the Sears shopping center. That place needs some draw.

There’s plenty of space available in Southbridge Mall!! Does anybody think this might be part of the reason for Brent Willett’s leaving also?

I think Brent left because it’s not a pleasant atmosphere here. We are NOT friendly, we are a nit pickin bunch…

Looks like they are being caught in yet another lie. I hope the people who voted for this bunch are real satisfied with themselves. The ones who should be ashamed are the ones that stayed home and didn’t vote at all.

What shallow thinking. To almost every issue you propose a City Hall conspiracy theory.

@Idiot-that is because it is true. You need to wake up and get your head out of your posterior.

The bottom line is this. Many chains WANT to expand and grow and the they decide to throw down on MC. Later the euphoria wears off and they examine their cash outlay closer and determine it’s a bad investment because the town is shrinking and doesn’t have much buying power and they’ll never get their money back.

turn it into a “Whole Foods Market”, or better yet a “New Pioneer Coop” from Iowa City. All this damn subsidizing just to have a steady influx of Cheap Chinese Crap. It’s mind boggling.

Mason City lacks about 500,000 people and billions in household income to even dream about meeting the demographics a Whole Foods Market requires.

There is only 1 in the entire state–in West Des Moines.

Or the bottom line could be that another tenant in the development gets to approve all tenants in the development and refused to allow Marshall’s in after the deal was struck and Marshall’s committed to coming to Mason. Go talk to Kohl’s HQ.

Who owns North Iowa Growth, LLC? If anyone has the correct info it would be nice to know.

$480,000.00 of free tax money over seven years. That is $68,500.00 of our tax money each year for 7 years.

I can’t imagine that building costing more than that to build. Maybe more, but for the most part we are getting ripped off as taxpayers by an inept city government,

Mason City citizens are stupid for letting this go on! What the hell is wrong with you people. Get a backbone!

Was it TIF or a tax rebating program that was struck with North Iowa Growth, LLC (Johnston IA)?

I did see that in your article, Matt, but I’m curious as to the source of the information or perhaps where I could learn more.

Thank you, that was very helpful. It is TIF, as you said, which boggles the mind a bit that this is considered urban renewal.

At the following link, page 268 (yes, it took me a while to find, so I’ll try to save anyone interested the trouble) you’ll find the “up to” payments that pay a super percentage (starting at 200%) of the increased taxes back to the developer. The construction costs were to be about $2M.

In reading the agreement conditions, if there is no tenant, then the city’s obligation ceases and no payments will be made.

If a tenant comes in and then closes during the TIF development grant period, then payments cease unless an agreeable alternative tenant comes in and meets the original tenant conditions.

So there’s a big incentive for the developer to retain a tenant for the 6 years of the agreement.

The first payment would be on Dec 31 2016.

People should have gotten a backbone last November. This was the city’s chance to get rid of the mayor and some council members. Makes me sick that people didn’t get more involved and got out to vote. So those of you that voted Bookie back in, thanks (sarcasm). And if you didn’t get out and vote, shame on you! Our town is a mess, and November was our chance for some betterment.

North Iowa Growth, LLC’s registered agent is listed as George H. Frampton. He is described as “Manager of North Iowa Growth,L.L.C.” and “President and Designated Representative of its Sole Member, Frampton Farms, Inc.”. His address is listed in Johnston, Iowa.

Probably a agent for McNider.

MacNider sold the property years ago before Kohls and Best Buy were built. I think that Frampton is representing Frampton.

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