SUBJECT: Adoption of 2004 Topeka Neighborhood Revitalization Plan
The Topeka City Council recently adopted a Neighborhood Revitalization Plan effective January 1, 2004. This plans encourages the revitalization of designated areas in within the city by means of property tax rebate incentives. While the area designated in the 2004 plan is significantly smaller than previous plans adopted by the Washburn Board of Regents between 1995-2003, it nevertheless, continues to include the same areas immediately adjacent to the campus on the east and northeast (see attached boundary map). Some of those areas are specifically labeled "Intensive Care" meaning, "areas with seriously distressed conditions that need immediate attention and intervention." An important reason for decreasing the size of the impact area is to concentrate improvements to the areas most in need so as to have the most dramatic effect on neighborhood improvement.
The Washburn-Lane Parkway Plan is a specific named improvement of the revitalization plan.
As the Washburn University campus is adjacent to the west boundary of the target area, Washburn can expect to enjoy the direct benefit of an improved neighborhood.
FINANCIAL IMPLICATIONS: Adoption of the 2004 Neighborhood Revitalization Plan allows for property tax incentives on improvements to qualifying properties. In essence, by adopting this plan, Washburn is agreeing to forego indeterminate increases on improvements to some properties for 10 years (15 years if they meet historic criteria). From a practical standpoint, this has no financial impact on the University as those taxes are not being collected now.
RECOMMENDATION: President Farley recommends adoption of the 2004 Neighborhood Revitalization Plan as a positive effort to improve neighborhoods near the campus and elsewhere in the city.
(date) Jerry B. Farley, President