Rock County riverfront parcel draws no buyers

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Catherine W. Idzerda
July 15, 2015

INDIANFORD—Apparently, the price wasn't right.

Wednesday's deadline for sealed bids on a Rock County-owned riverfront property came and went without a single offer.

For sale was a 3.3-acre parcel with 335 feet of river frontage just north of the Indianford dam at 9238 N. County F. The parcel is the former site of the Cliff Lodge, a popular dance hall in the 1940s and '50s.

In May, the county announced that it was selling the land by sealed bid with a starting price of $210,000.

The county received a handful of inquires but no bids, said Randy Terronez, assistant to the Rock County administrator.

This is the first time the county used the sealed bid process to try to sell a piece of real estate, said Jodi Millis, county purchasing manager.

The county has sold land at auction, and the parcel also could be sold on Wisconsin Surplus, a website that specializes in selling municipal property of all kinds.

The land was donated to the county in 2008, Terronez said. The economy wasn't in great shape, and the owner wanted the tax write-off.

The county could have used the land for a park, but it already has a park that spans the river just below the Indianford dam, he said.

County officials decided to wait until the economy improved before putting it back on the market.

Terronez said the county staff committee will decide what to do next, probably at its August meeting.

The property is zoned as commercial highway interchange, meaning it could be used for tourist-related retail shops, a gas station or a restaurant. But it's likely that the zoning could be changed to residential because nearby properties on that side of County F are single-family homes.

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