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City to prep more Hanlon Park lands

Council has endorsed a city staff proposal for moving towards development of the third and final phase of the Hanlon Creek Business Park.
Council agreed last month that staff should report back by next Jan. 31 on progress towards options for funding the development and servicing of this land.
The option favoured by staff would see the city get a private sector partner to help it move towards development of Phase 3. The city would enter into a joint venture partnership with an experienced land developer.
A new staff report recommends against selling the 84 acres of land in Phase 3 that the city owns. It says this option would lower the city’s capital investment and risk, but it would eliminate city hall’s influence on development of employment lands in Guelph. From 2001 until 2011 – the year the Hanlon Creek Business Park opened on the west side of the Hanlon Expressway in the south end – the city didn’t control any significant employment lands, the report says. “The product that was at market during this period was privately owned,” it says.
“During this period, the city was shortlisted by various companies, such as Ferraro Roche (a leading global chocolate and confectionary manufacturer),” the report says.
“The inability for these companies to come to agreeable real estate terms with private property owners resulted in these investment opportunities locating elsewhere.”
The city owns about 84 acres of unserviced development land in the 119-acre Phase Three, with the rest owned by the Snyder family estate.
There is a need to register Phase 3 at the Ontario Land Titles office by November 2016 in order to comply with an Ontario Municipal Board condition.
A lot of detailed engineering and environmental work needs to be done before this can happen, the report says. Based on city staff’s evaluation of market conditions, it’s expected site servicing of Phase 3 lands wouldn’t be required for another five to seven years. Phase 3 is designated as a business park.
The city is developing Phase One along with a private partner, Belmont Equity Partners. Belmont has sold all of its 27 acres in Phase One. But the city, which owned 96 acres, still has 73 unsold acres in Phase 1, which is designated as a corporate business park. The city has sold about 63 acres – almost all of the land it had owned in Phase Two – to a private sector partner, Cooper Construction. Cooper now owns 139 acres in Phase 2, while the city now owns only three acres.
Phase Two, which is designated to be both a business park and a corporate business park, is serviced and has been “shovel ready” for development since mid-2012. Phase One has been in that position since mid-2011.
Through its economic development department, the city has been acting as the main developer for Phases 1 and 3.

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