Merriam terminates car dealership development agreement, will save $ 1 million in TIF funds

The dirt lot next to the dealership will become an outdoor showroom for Reed's Chrysler Jeep Dodge and Ram dealership. The city had previously approved the lot for development of a separate new car dealership. 

The Merriam City Council last week terminated the Merriam Pointe agreement that would have brought a new car dealership to Frontage Road.

Under the termination agreement, Infiniti owner Richard Webb will sell 7000 W. Frontage Road to Randy Reed, who owns Reed Hyundai. Reed is currently building a Chrysler Jeep Dodge and Ram dealership next to the tract.

Richard Webb spent more than $5 million getting Tract B, pictured above, pad ready. Webb initially intended to use Tract B to develop a car dealership.

The termination agreement saves the city $1 million tax increment financing funds and will result in a four-acre parking lot and potential brand expansion, according to city documents. City Administrator Chris Engel said he appreciates Webb’s efforts and desire to deliver on his vision for the land.

“If not for [Webb, the land] would still assess at zero and would have zero economic value for anybody,” Engel said. “It really took him looking at it and saying he thought he could do something with it, and the city deciding to partner with him as an equity partner, which is, I think, why we do TIF.”

Reed has until Dec. 31, 2021 to complete construction, at which point the $5 million in supplemental tax increment financing will become payable to Webb. The tax increment financing terminates upon completion of the parking lot, and at that point it will return to the city’s tax rolls, Engel said.

Engel said the parking lot will result in more revenue than the dead space a new building would yield.

Merriam originally committed to $6 million worth of tax increment financing under the redevelopment agreement, and that TIF would have run until July 2023. Engel said expects the parking lot will be completed by 2022.

The city council unanimously approved the Merriam Pointe agreement termination, as well as the following items related to the Merriam Pointe Agreement:

  • A resolution to transfer funds from one Interstate 35 tax increment financing fund to another, so the city can have $5 million in one fund for Webb’s payout.
  • A preliminary development plan for an automobile dealership at 7000 and 7020 W. Frontage Road, if Reed chooses to expand the brand.
  • Acceptance of dedication easements on the Merriam Pointe eighth plat.