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Muskego Lake Development: What's Next?

With the purchase offer dead, questions remain over what will become of the property along the lake, and if committee will still be needed.

Michael Dilworth, developer and property owner of land along Janesville Road on Little Muskego Lake, is "no longer interested" in selling land to the city, which became the center of heated public debate since it was introduced last August. However at the same August meeting, a second option was proposed that featured development of condominiums.

The letter from Dilworth attorney Gerald Boisits to the Common Council in August outlined the lake park concept along with an 'option A' featuring eight houses near the lake and two buildings off Janesville Road that would have condominiums and retail space for restaurants and gift shops.

Thedid not mention future use of the land, and repeated attempts for comment from Boisits have gone unanswered. However, the letter did request that the "Park" be  taken out of the master plan.

A similar , the law firm representing the Nanette Gardetto trust also stated their withdrawal from selling the property to the city. They also asked for the property to be removed from references of future park development, so it can be "marketed without encumbrance." Again, attempts to determine what future plans Gardetto may be open to from Foley and Lardner were unanswered.

Mayor Kathy Chiaverotti said if the possible lake acquisition notes are taken out of the city's comprehensive plan, "the properties will still be shown as their existing use which is medium density residential. Any change in a new use would require future amendments to the plan."

Reactions from council members to the were varied. Alderman Tracy Snead was a 'yes' vote on the to purchase the plan, and the author of a proposal to form an ad hoc committee to determine costs for development of a park. Tuesday to challenger Robert Wolfe, with her vote being a focus of his campaign.

"I'm not sure what to say.  I am disappointed because I have spent most of my time defending my position for nothing now I guess," she said.  "I wasn't married to the project but felt it had some real merit and should be pursued with caution to help create an epicenter for Muskego.  Hopefully, we can find something that will help us with this downtown development and making Muskego attractive for businesses to be interested in coming here."

Alderman Dan Soltysiak, who had cast a 'no' vote on the purchase, was surprised over the landowners' reaction, but was hopeful the committee could still serve a purpose.

"The withdrawal of the offer to sell by the property owners for the Lake Park was a complete shock to me. I was looking forward to see what the adhoc committee developed along with what the research and public dialogue revealed," he stated. "One of the main reasons for the lake park that I have heard from many proponents was to create a gathering place and a focal point. I would like to see the adhoc lake park committee refocused to look at how and where we may be able to create this gathering place and a focal point for the community."

Denise Konkol April 08, 2012 at 02:41 PM
The city is not in the business of initiating the purchase of private homes, nor should it be. That I can envision going over like a lead balloon.
obtw April 08, 2012 at 04:41 PM
Whether it's a shack or not is irreverent. It's her shack. And I strongly believe she has a right to keep it contrary to the Supreme Court decision in Kelo v. City of New London where the Court ruled private property can be taken over by the government for "public good". The rub is they viewed economic development as "public good." So Heide, I may not agree with you on most of your issues, but I'll fight with you on this one.
Concerned Person April 09, 2012 at 03:15 PM
Well done people of Muskego, we will never again have this opportunity. The cost of this land once the condos will have built might as well have been 10 million dollars, because everyone was too close minded to realize it's real value . It is priceless and will now be lost forever. This explains why this uptight city only brings in soon to be social security collectors and no new money is coming into the city. Well done.
Interested Party April 09, 2012 at 03:48 PM
To Concerned Person: I agree with you about a missed opportunity, but I disagree with you on specifying "people of Muskego". The opposed were a relatively small group of closed minded individuals from the Bay Breeze condominiums and other lake residents. I refer to them as the noMls (not on MY lake). They don't want to share "their" lake with others in the community, and heaven forbid, "outsiders". They spread their misinformation to others in this community, who unfortunately swallow it up. I have heard that business that had considered building or moving to this community, feel that Muskego is unfriendly to new businesses. It is unfortunate that Muskego has been labeled as "unfriendly". I feel that the problem lies with the population that will only accept a new business if it doesn't impact them. In other words, "not in my backyard" or "not on my lake". We had this problem when Kohl's and Wal-mart wanted to build here and now the citizens will not have a park where we can actually see and use the lake because of the citizens who only consider their needs and wants, not what would be beneficial for the community.
Mary C. Steinbauer June 29, 2012 at 06:11 PM
The land where the condos now are placed was the old Muskego Beach and it was offered to the City by Mr.Masterson in the 1980s for $750,000 and citizens wanted it but the City did not. That is when J.Ingersoll bought the property

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