Mayor Urges City To Make Decision On Oliver Towers Land Swap - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Mayor Urges City To Make Decision On Oliver Towers Land Swap

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"Another week or two of this nonsense and they will be gone! And I want the council to try to explain why that happened," said Mayor Virg Bernero. 

Mayor Bernero worries Davenport University will leave town after council fails to move forward with his plans to help the school expand. 

Monday night the city council voted against setting a public hearing for the proposed land swap with Davenport University. Instead, at Monday's meeting Lansing Community College made its case for the land.

Most who voted against moving ahead with the public hearing would like to see LCC make an offer on the space but Mayor Bernero says those council members who voted no are playing Russian roulette with the city's future.

"There isn't a city in this state, in the county probably, that wouldn't welcome Davenport with open arms, but leave it to the Lansing City Council to say no, we don't want 13 million dollars of investment, we don't want two to three thousand more students milling around our downtown," said Mayor Bernero.

Now some council members have suggested putting the land through the proposal process and seeing what kinds of offers they may get, but Mayor Bernero says he won't take the time to do that because he doesn't want Davenport to leave while the city is looking for other offers.

LCC leaders says the land should go through the process arguing the school is landlocked and it's the only space to expand.

"When you look at urban land assembly, this is a critical, critical land use for the college - pure and simple - we're there, we're there to stay, we've been there a long time," Larry Meyer, Chair of LCC Board of Trustees.

Now all real estate offers have to come from the mayor's office in order to be considered by council. When asked what he would do if he were to get a solid offer from LCC, Mayor Bernero said he was "unwilling to engage in hypotheticals."

He hopes the council will reconsider Davenport next week.

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