Lake West Development sues City of Wayzata for denial at TCF site

Curt Fretham of Lake West Development has initiated a lawsuit against the City of Wayzata.

The lawsuit was started after the most recent denial by the Wayzata City Council for the redevelopment of 200 East Lake Street in Downtown Wayzata.

The City was served with the complaint and summons on or about July 20th.

1989 Planned Unit Development contract terminated?

According to the lawsuit, both parties have the authority to terminate the TCF building PUD and its more restrictive land use regulations compared to the underlying C-4 zoning district.

Lake West claims that it has served notice and insists that the City is obliged to “revoke the PUD” within 30 days. Afterward, the property will be governed by the regulations applicable in the district where it is located, specifically C-4 or related variations as per the Central Business District in the 2040 Comprehensive plan.

Arbitrary and capricious decision making?

The lawsuit includes another allegation stating that the Wayzata City Council and Planning Commission based their decisions on personal preferences rather than adhering to the City Code and Comprehensive Plan.

These alleged unwritten standards have not been enforced for other businesses and developments within the same zoning districts, particularly concerning parking, parking structures, loading, deliveries, and truck turnaround areas.

Furthermore, it is claimed that other developments in the community were not obligated to provide truck turnarounds within their properties.

Lake West claims it submitted a fully compliant application

Applications for development become intriguing because if an application fully complies with the code, the zoning authority is left with no choice but to approve it.

In addition, Lake West claims that the Staff Report provided evidence that the project aligns with all relevant standards.

Massing Break Ordinance an Unconstitutional Taking?

City Code 909.07(A)(2) requires “for every 150 feet of facade” a building is now required to include “a publicly accessible midblock pedestrian connection or street through the building with a minimum clear width of 25 feet” in order to provide views of Lake Minnetonka and allow for potential future access to the lake.”

Lake West alleges that the City is taking one sixth of the property, and demanding that the rights of way be elevated over the raised railroad berm with elevator access provided.

60 / 120 day time deadline missed?

Lake West is also claiming that the application was denied 130 days after after it was submitted, and that statute requires an approval or a denial by a municipality within 60 days.

Work Session requests denied

During a telephone conversation with Fretham, he mentioned that he has requested meetings with City Officials and Staff on several occasions during City Council Work Sessions, and those requests have been denied.

Work session meetings are less formal, and no decisions are final, but they provide an opportunity for attendees, including elected officials and City staff to freely exchange ideas.

As of now, City Manager Jeff Dahl has not commented on the lawsuit.

This is a developing story, stay tuned for more information.

Daniel Gustafson & Elisha Gustafson Realtors
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