November 18, 2015

Information below and picture below are excerpted from the Chicago Tribune ad placed by Shodeen Builders earlier this month. Does it seem to you that the builders are offering only the four slips at BigFoot that their realtor said they would be offering, when they are selling 450 residences?

Walking along Lake Geneva Shore

(Chicago Tribune Ad that ran on November 9, 2015. The advertisement was about the benefits of buying a residence in the coming Symphony development.) Residents will enjoy highly sought-after lake access, with boat slips available. “The boat slip access, recreation center and all that Lake Geneva has to offer, in conjunction with the maintenance-free lifestyle provided by Symphony Bay, is sure to be a hit with Chicago area buyers who are looking for year-round resort-style living.” To truly embrace the lifestyle offered at the Row homes of Fontana, Shodeen Homes is including one-year boat club membership with home purchase. “What better way for residents to enjoy and appreciate vacation living on the lake, than with a boat club membership.”


Does it really seem likely, as their realtor stated, that the older people living in this retirement community (AKA future senior ghetto) don’t own boats, or go out on them? What fictional world is this community set in? It’s all about getting approval for things, and then changing what is going to be done. The communities around the lake must make certain that the small pier at Big Foot Beach, where the “access” to boating for the huge community is planned to be, is indeed limited in writing, and under contract, to only four slips.

The above ad is not the product of a misunderstanding, nor was it written by some overzealous copy writer. It quotes Mr. Pollard’s new partner, Bob Meyn, the Vice President of Taylor Morrison Homes, and it was released to send a message to prospective buyers, as well as people already living in the Lake Geneva area. Maybe even some who might be looking at the Lake Hillmoor Development. When did the project of empty nesters, couples over 55 with no children, Del Web style development get restructured as the resort project depicted in the ad?

Mr. Pollard and his collaborators from Orleans Homes, now Taylor Morrison Homes, put on two very long presentations before the Lake Geneva Planning Commission explaining that the objective of the project was to target the over 55 group who coveted a Lake Geneva address, but not Geneva Lake Access. Did Mr. Pollard sell the Planning Commission and City Council on this Del Web concept just to get approval of his project? But now that someone else has taken over, they appear to be changing the game plan to sell the consumer, i.e. the public, on the Symphony Bay project with the allure of access to Geneva Lake and boat slip availability, without ever mentioning that they should be 55 or older? Is this some sort of ‘bait and switch’ deal, and wouldn’t that be most fitting since Mr. Pollard sits on the Lake Geneva Police and Fire Commission. Mr. Pollard is the one who has a lake Marina in Buttons Bay where he has been renting eight or 10 boat slips, and a limited number of buoys, for the past 15 years.

If this is the access point being referred to in the advertisement, Symphony can’t possibly be offering boat slips to all the 425 homebuyers being tantalized by this ad. Unless Mr. Pollard and associates are planning to offer an In/Out Boat Service at Symphony Bay, where boats can be stored off site and brought to the lake for launching on request, and then returned to storage after use. The Town of Linn prohibited this practice of in/out Service in 2011 by opposing a Comprehensive Plan Change request to rezone an acre and a half of residential property to commercial, so a storage barn could be built for a small in/out Service for a limited number of boats. Three attempts have been made for a Land Use and zoning change, and each one was turned down unanimously because the project was simply unacceptable.

If Lake Geneva City Attorney Dan Draper’s instructions, given at the public hearing for Hillmoor, were followed in Linn, and the actual project consisting of an in/out service, was not taken into consideration when deciding on a Comprehensive Map Change Amendment , the map change might very well have passed in Linn. Lake Geneva is once again being led down a primrose path where outright lies are to be avoided, but slippery conduct is to be rewarded. In the real world (not Dan Draper’s or the builder’s) a change of the comprehensive plan basically means the builder can do almost anything it wants, and if resisted or denied, can file suit for almost certain damages. It is time to be truthful to the people around the lake, that there is no “oceanfront property in Arizona.”

Lake Geneva T.H.I.E.F. Plan


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