Kwik Trip has made an official offer to Oneida county to buy the county highway department property on Rhinelander's west side but the process is a long way from conclusion. In rejecting that inital offer Thursday the county board wants more time to think about it.
County Corporation Counsel Brian Desmond told the county board what Kwik Trip's offer would be for the 14 acre property near the intersection of Business highway 8 and state 47....
"....the offer from Kwik Trip came in at $2.3 million dollars...."
Kwik Trip official Hans Zietlow says they like the location for an expanded store. A new store is opening next week on Rhinelander's east side, but Zietlow says they see a larger store on the county property on the city's west side....
"...it will be a facility that trucks can get in and out of. It's going to be a bigger store. If there's natural gas out there, and if there's people converting their vehicles over to compressed natural gas which we believe is a clean energy of the future(they will have compressed gas). If the store on the east side employs 30 people, the store on the west side would (employ) 40 people..."
Many unrevealed contingencies are said to be part of the offer.
Rhinelander City Administrator Blaine Oborn says if the complicated agreement goes through, the city would set up a tax-incremental financing district to pay for street, sewer and water.
The second part of the question is whether to build a new highway department facility between the Highway 8 bypass and Lake Julia Road on 35 county-owned acres.
Two informal estimates to build a new facility find a possible cost of between $6 million and $14 million dollars to build the site on county-owned land. To fix the current county buildings was estimated to be in the $2 million to $4 million range.
Though Kwik Trip had wanted a reply by next week, the board passed a motion asking Kwik Trip to wait until February 1 so the county could look at all the ramifications before making a decision. They also approved an Ad Hoc committee of five to stay on top of the issue.