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WATERLOO — A planned Dollar General Store along Martin Luther King Jr. Drive is back on track after being derailed earlier this year by unexpected development costs.

Waterloo City Council members voted unanimously Monday to sell 1.4 acres of land on the northeast corner of MLK Jr. Drive and Idaho Street to The Overland Group LLC, of Birmingham, Ala.

The agreement calls for the developer to pay $12,000 for the property, which is near a city-owned recreation trailhead, and build a Dollar General Store within two years.

Council members had voted in November 2017 to sell the site to The Overland Group for $25,000. But the developer never closed on the deal after investigating the property, which includes a large waterway through its center.

“The Overland Group did an initial study and found out there was going to be really expensive site costs, so they sort of stepped away from it,” said Fred Miehe, a real estate broker handling the transaction.

Community Planning and Development Director Noel Anderson said the lower purchase price was designed to help account for the buyer’s higher costs.

“Now, they have regrouped with numbers to move ahead,” Anderson said. “The offer price is lower as they experienced soil difficulty reports for the site, per their investigations under the original contract.”

Under the development agreement, the city can buy back the land for the purchase price if construction on the store does not begin within two years.

The city bought the land in the 1990s for construction of MLK Jr. Drive. It offered the property back to the original land owners and successors in 2007 but received no offers at the $40,000 appraised value.

The property is in a planned commercial zoning district, meaning the project would still need to get site plan approval by going through the Planning, Programming and Zoning Commission and City Council.

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Waterloo City Reporter

Waterloo city reporter for the Courier

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