Major North Platte housing project to start later this year

(Olsson Associates/ North Platte Area Chamber & Development)

A new major housing project, along with neighborhood retail and office space is expected to start later this year on a tract located on the northeast corner of West A Street and Lakeview Boulevard in North Platte, according to a press release. The proposed developer is BiC Construction, LLC, a Lincoln, Neb. headquartered company.

“Housing demand in North Platte has a sizable answer in the near future," said co-general manager of BiC Construction Boyd Batterman. “We anticipate bringing approximately 296 new dwelling units to the North Platte market, along with developing neighborhood commercial support services. Recent housing studies and market analysis shows that North Platte has a material shortage of workforce housing. We hope to implement at least four different housing products--approximately 100 single-family homes, 26 duplex-style homes, 26 townhome/4-plex style homes and 144 apartment living units.”

The new master planned neighborhood will be called Prairie Skies at Two Rivers. The project will be a multiple-product type development on the Hoppe family property. BiC Construction has entered into a purchase agreement with Hoppe Lumber Company to acquire the 62 acre tract.

However, the proposed mixed-use development is dependent on the City’s approval of tax increment financing (TIF). BiC Construction say they are attracted to North Platte because the city had already taken the necessary first steps to be proactive in allowing the tract of land to be a potential redevelopment project area, which makes the development feasible.

“If it wasn’t for the potential use of TIF, we simply could not look at this development in North Platte. The numbers just don’t work to attract the workforce housing price point without TIF. We are planning to pass the cost savings on to the home buyer and renters. Workforce housing is such a critical issue across all of Nebraska,” Batterman said.

“The North Platte community has been very proactive by declaring the site blighted and substandard, initiating a comprehensive housing study and participating in the Nebraska Rural Workforce Housing initiative. We’ve also received strong support from the North Platte Area Chamber and Development Corporation, which has been working with major employers in regards to the need for additional housing. City officials have given us outstanding cooperation,” Batterman said.

Batterman added, “we’re very familiar with North Platte as our management team was previously involved in major building projects involving Great Plains Health, North Platte public schools, Mid-Plains Community College and North Platte Catholic School.”

BiC Construction will also be engaging project staff members from North Platte to help implement the proposed mixed-use development.

A recent neighborhood meeting was held at Eisenhower School and drew approximately 50 interested participants, who had an opportunity to learn about the project firsthand and ask questions.

A North Platte Public School official provided written communication at the neighborhood meeting that the proposed new students living in the new housing development could be accommodated at Eisenhower Elementary or any other North Platte public school.

Implementation will include amending the city’s comprehensive plan, rezoning, tax increment financing and subdivision creation as part of the governmental approvals. Pending governmental approvals, remaining infrastructure construction may begin this fall with possible house construction later in the year.

“We hope the citizens will welcome and embrace the new housing styles at Prairie Skies at Two Rivers,” Batterman said. “The end product will be one that the North Platte community will enjoy for many years into the future.”

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