HAMMOND | In 2012, the city offered to purchase the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge at 7527 Kennedy Ave. near I-80/94, but the FOP board rejected the offer.
On Tuesday, the Hammond Redevelopment Commission voted unanimously to extend the same offer of $513,250 to the organization along with a provision that the FOP be allowed to remain in the building until Dec. 31.
This time, the deal may go through.
“We are not thinking of commercial development,” said Phil Taillon, Hammond’s executive director of planning and development, of possible plans for the land once the building is razed. “It has to fit in with the (residential) neighborhood.”
The property could be used for park improvement because it sits adjacent to Dowling Park, Taillon said. Purdue University Calumet recently received approval to purchase 15 acres of the park to use for student-athlete and recreational use.
Funding for the purchase would come from the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development Park Improvement grant, he said.
Commissioners also approved publishing requests for proposals (RFPs) for land the city owns at 2500 New York Ave.
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“We have demolished two significant buildings on that property,” Taillon told the commissioners. “Calumet College has expressed interest, but there are no guarantees (the college will submit an RFP).”
In other business, the Hammond Redevelopment Commission’s attorney Dave Westland opened four proposals submitted for the two remaining parcels at Oxbow Landing. The proposals, which are referred to the planning and development staff for review, include the following:
• Holladay Properties submitted two proposals: $639,993 for the 4.48 acre parcel one and $404,998.65 for the 2.55 acre parcel two; and a separate $404,998.65 bid for just parcel two.
• River Park Ice Arena Development Group submitted a $639,999.36 proposal for parcel one.
• Claude Gendreau submitted a proposal of $181,000 per acre for parcel two for a total of $461,550.
• Ascent Hospitality submitted a proposal of $716,000 for parcel one and $485,000 for parcel two.
“We want the highest and best use (for the property), not just the highest bid,” Taillon said.