Only 18 months after buying the property, the City of Saline may consider selling 3.5 acres of land at 207 Monroe St.
At Monday night’s city council meeting, city manager Todd Campbell said he’s been contacted by a party interested in buying the property, known to many as the "Karpenski" property.. City council bought the property for $100,000 in 2011. The property abuts People’s Park and the city’s waste water treatment plant and was seen as valuable for potential expansion. it has also been considered for expansion of Oakwood Cemetery. Campbell said the property was assessed at $200,000 in 2008.
Campbell asked city council the inquiry should be handled.
No council member expressed opposition to selling the property.
Council members Brian Marl and David Rhoads were against the city’s purchase of the property in 2011.
“I made my position clear two years ago. I didn’t think we needed it then and I don’t think we need it now,” Marl said.
Mayor Gretchen Driskell said she had mixed feelings about selling the property. If the city council wishes to sell the property, it should use a professional realtor to market it and all city-owned property.
“What we do best is city services, not marketing property,” Driskell said. “We have quite a few real estate assets and I don’t believe we’re marketing them properly to get as much value as possible.”
Before the city owned the property, it purchased an easement from property owners that allowed city residents to access People’s Park. Council members Linda TerHaar, James Roth and Dean Girbach said any agreement to sell the property should provide for public ingress and egress to the park.
Driskell suggested that city council discuss selling the property at a future city council work session.
At the beginning of the discussion, council member David Rhoads excused himself from the discussion, saying that if the city was selling the property he may be interested in purchasing it.