STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAU) - The third try was the charm. After two prior attempts to attract a tenant for the former Dunhams Sports building in downtown Stevens Point, they have a commitment for a new tenant that will be there a long time.
Mayor Andrew Halverson says Great Lakes Educational Loan Services manages student loans, and they are expanding to Stevens Point. “They are looking to expand. Stevens Point was positioned competitively between a few other communities throughout the midwest and the country, and we were fortunate enough to be able to land them here, and land them for 150 new jobs for Stevens Point as part of this, and occupying the former Dunham’s building in downtown.”
The deal required the City Council to transfer $500,000 to the Community Development Authority to finish preparing the building for Great Lakes Educational Loan Services. “The $500,000 that was authorized today will go for leasehold improvements that will be paid back as part of that lease over years two through seven. The ten-year lease will be with no rent, no consideration for year one, and then they will also be investing a million dollars into the building.”
Halverson says the new tenant will be rent free for the first year, but over a ten year period, the city will recover its investment in the property.
Preparing the building will take a few months. Great Lakes plans to rent some temporary space next to Save-A-Lot on the city's south side next month, and start hiring their first approximately 50 employees.
Mayor Andrew Halverson's comments on this and other issues from the 10/21/13 City Council meeting can be heard in our Newsmakers Interview podcast, here.