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FAIRFIELD, A SILENT BOMB, DROPS ON THE CITY

Based on the dates provided in the information portion of the plan commission’s packet, and the paperwork submitted, switching the Hampton Inn out (they had applied for a permit to build a hotel up on Sheridan Springs Road on the northeast end of town) to the Fairfield Inn , was presented to the city on September tenth, then reviewed by staff on September eleventh, and now approved by unanimous plan commission vote on September nineteenth!

Wow! The speed of light has nothing on these very capable and nearly silent big business types.  Is that good news for the city, or not such good news?  It’s too soon to tell.  The plan commission approved a “Precise Implementation Plan” for the Fairfield Inn & Suites for this piece of valuable property. This is the land that the Hampton Inn was to go on, but (according to the information presented to the commission) the Hampton Inn corporate leadership turned that plan down because there was another Hampton Inn too close to the location, and building another hotel in Lake Geneva would interfere with that Hampton Inn by drawing business from it.

The proposed Fairfield Inn & Suites will only be four stories, with ninety-two rooms, instead of the five-story the Hampton would have been; however the (to be constructed) fifty-three foot height of the thing is still above current maximum building height, and will require a new water line and all those on that new water line will be assessed to pay for it. The approval does not indicate that anyone who will be assessed for this line was informed before the plan commission voted 6 to 0 to approve the Fairfield Inn & Suites.  The revelation of such an assessment to other property owners nearby might prove interesting.

One last comment on the report, in very small 8 font type, detailing the decision, was the following: “Chief Waubonsie/Purchase Price from the city/off copy/pip-app5” Where did the Indians come in on this, or are there any Indians here, there or anywhere at all?  Why is this new hotel construction being run through the city like something through a goose, at top speed?  The city expects to make about $350,000.00 a year in taxes, about $500,000.00 in annual bed taxes, employ 120 workers for six months to build, and then employ about forty locals to run it.

Will all that transpire as planned?  Will the Indians throw a tomahawk into the deal?  Only the city council will be able to sort through that complexity, not to mention the fact that any property owner who’s going to be assessed for some nearby hotel’s water line installation is going to complain at the top of his or her lungs.  This deal was approved by the plan commission but the city council will sit in overall judgment, with respect to whether this hotel will be built and also review all of the details about whether it is truly good for Lake Geneva or not.

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