Lots and lots of lots in Jesup
By Cheryl Parker

There has been a growing demand for housing in Jesup. Shatzer’s 1st and 2nd additions, on the circle south of the soccer fields on Church Street and Church Circle, and Prospect Street, are sold out. The South Haven Condominium Community north of South Street is filled. The nearby Greenhaven addition on Second Street, between Douglas and Ann Streets, is sold out. (There may be some empty lots in these neighborhoods, but they have all been purchased.)
There are three new housing divisions becoming available within Jesup city limits.

The West Echo Hill addition is located behind the Dollar General Store on South Street/Dubuque Road. It is adjacent to Emerald Acres, but there will be no access between the two neighborhoods. There will be over 60 lots in this addition, and it will be developed in three phases. Dalton Street will connect the neighborhood to Dubuque Road; the streets in this neighborhood are all named after former Jesup mayors. Phase I at the west end, is available now. Phase 2 and 3 will be developed following the completion of Phase I. Panther Home Builders in Cedar Falls is the developer. Check out their website at www.westechojesup.com or call 319-768-7235 for more information.

Across the road, behind the new BCHC/UnityPoint Clinic under construction, is the new Prairie Winds subdivision consisting of 15 single family homes. The ground immediately behind the clinic, south of James Street, is being rezoned to condominium. There will be three buildings, each containing two residences (total of six residences).
Immediately north of those condominiums, north of James Street, there will be one road, Wright Way. Wright Way allows the neighborhood access to James or Ann Street.

“We are putting in sewer and water now,” said developer Chris Fischels. “The first lot has been sold and that home construction will begin early July.” These lots are in Buchanan County. For more information give Fischels a call at 319-234-5000.

Benson Ridge Addition is the new housing addition a short distance south of B&B property on Benson Shady Grove Avenue. There will be seven house lots accessed by two driveways. The driveways will not connect; it was important to developer Scott Trueg to not have a circle that could be abused by nonresidents. City water has been installed and sewer stubs are in place for each lot. The middle lots have been graded and seeded with grass; the end lots will be finish graded with dirt excavated from the middle lots’ basements. Lot #4 has been sold and there is another sale pending. These lots all feature patio walk-outs and concrete driveways. For more information check out T&K Developers on Facebook or call Scott at 319-239-4613.

In addition to these city lots, Mike and Donna Schares are in the process of creating residential lots in rural Jesup, south and east of the cemeteries. Watch for more information on these lots as they become available.

Iowa, along with every other state except Arizona, allows a plan known as Tax Incremental Financing (TIF) to encourage development and urban renewal. Bare ground is taxed at a nominal rate. When a new house (or business) is built upon that piece of ground, the valuation for property taxes increases greatly. The difference between the tax collected before and after construction is the “TIF.” This taxation would ordinarily go straight to the county (for distribution to cities, schools, county services, etc.). Under the TIF agreement, that difference in the “before” and “after” tax assessment is given directly to the developer, in exchange for the up-front costs they incur in providing infrastructure (city water, sewer, roads, etc.).

In the Jesup agreements, the TIF incentive expires ten years after the first house purchase, so it is important to the developer to finish the project as soon as possible. The sooner the house is sold, the sooner the developer receives the TIF funds. While the county gives up this increased income during the TIF period, they are not receiving any less money than when it was assessed as bare ground; and as soon as the TIF period expires, the county receives the full upgraded amount.

In addition, new homes generate more money through their owners’ spending on goods and services in the community.
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