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BE sells lot in Golden Spike Park

By Staff | Dec 24, 2017

One of the lots in the left background of this photo was recently sold by the city of Blue Earth to BENCO Electric Cooperative of Mankato for the site of their new station. It is in the Golden Spike Business Park.

The city of Blue Earth will soon be filling another lot in the Golden Spike Business Park, located just north of I-90 Freeway.

At their second meeting of December, the City Council unanimously passed a land transfer ordinance that will sell the lot to BENCO Electric Cooperative.

At first it appeared that two lots in the business park were going to be sold to BENCO Electric. But, after some discussion, it was determined that the electric cooperative was only interested in one lot at this point in time.

Duane Ehrich, who is on the board of directors at BENCO Electric, was present at last Monday’s council meeting.

“We were looking at two lots,” Ehrich said. “But we have decided we can fit everything in on just one lot.”

Ehrich confirmed the board had authorized the purchase.

The 5.425 acre lot is being sold by the city at a price of $33,520. BENCO Electric had signed a purchase agreement earlier and had put down $1,000 earnest money, so they have a remaining balance due of $32,520. “We have two facilities in this area, one in Frost and one in Winnebago,” Ehrich said. “They are outdated we can’t get some of our equipment in or out of them. We decided to build here and close the other two.”

Ehrich also said they have been in contact with United Builders of Blue Earth and plan to construct a large pre-stressed building on the lot as soon as possible.

BENCO Electric serves 18,000 members and covers all of the rural areas of Faribault County and portions of several other area counties around Mankato. They are headquartered in Mankato.

The sale of the lot means there are just two more lots available, although the city does have an option for additional adjoining land.

In another economic development decision at last Monday’s meeting, the council discussed a contract with Community and Economic Development Associates (CEDA) to take over the EDA duties previously handled by the Faribault County Development Corporation (FCDC).

The council mainly discussed how many days per week they wanted to contract with CEDA for. The consensus seemed to be three days a week, with the idea of having the county contract for the other two days, if possible.

The council decided to make its final decision on the contract after they had discussed the matter with the county in more detail.

City administrator Tim Ibisch said he hoped that eventually they could develop a joint powers agreement that would include the cities of Wells and Winnebago to also share in the cost of a full time contract with CEDA.

“But, right now, we have things going on and things that need to be done,” Ibisch said. “So I think we need to move on this as soon as we can, and not wait until later.”