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Council hears CID proposal for Springfield’s 2nd Target store 

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A community improvement district for Sunshine Towne Center, the future home of Springfield’s second Target store, was proposed at last night’s meeting of Springfield City Council. 

A cooperative agreement among the city, developer Springfield West Partners LLC and the new CID would reimburse the developer for infrastructure improvements at the 23-acre site on the southeast corner of the West Sunshine Street and West Bypass intersection. 

It was the first reading and public hearing for the council measure, with a vote scheduled for March 11. 

Tom Walker of Sunshine West Partners said the public response has been enthusiastic. 

“For whatever it’s worth, the response has been unbelievable for this project,” he said. “I’ve developed retail for decades, and we have people lined up to take space in this project. It’s that good.” 

Springfield Economic Vitality Director Amanda Ohlensehlen said the shopping center would be anchored by a 150,000-square-foot Target, which represents about 30,000 square feet more retail space than the existing Springfield store at 1825 E. Primrose St. The Sunshine Towne Center development also will include a 50,000-square-foot retail shopping center and three outparcel lots. 

Ohlensehlen said on June 26, 2023, council approved an infrastructure reimbursement agreement for the development. It included a $4 million reimbursement for improvements to West Sunshine Street, West Bypass and South Moore Road, and reimbursement was contingent upon the developer filing the CID petition. 

The CID, which does not include the Target portion of the site, would implement a 1% sales and use tax on goods within the district and would result in an estimated $2.2 million of reimbursable project costs for interior streets in the development, plus interest, city officials say. 

Councilmember Brandon Jenson thanked Walker for using an economic development tool to generate public benefit for the city. 

“It’s what I do,” said Walker. 

Walker was the developer for the Walmart Supercenter located across West Bypass from the Sunshine Towne Center site, as well as the Walmart Supercenter in Ozark. His partner in Sunshine West Partners is Curtis Jared, according to past Springfield Business Journal reporting. 

Walker said the entire project for the second Target store hinged on having access off West Bypass, as the Missouri Department of Transportation would not allow westbound access across the median on Sunshine Street. Walker said most people using the store would come from the east. 

Walker said MoDOT ultimately granted an entrance from the state limited-access highway via a road that is planned to run along the south side of the north-facing Target store. The access point comes at a cost of $135,000, he said. 

He described the road as a public access easement, rather than a public street, since the city Public Works office and Planning & Zoning Commission had no desire to accept dedication of the roadway as a public thoroughfare. 

Streets in the development would be built to city specifications with heavy-duty asphalt, Walker said, but there will never be a requirement for the city to maintain or replace the streets; rather, an operation and easement agreement will be set up between Springfield West Partners and Target regarding the responsibility for maintaining and improving the streets. 

“It’s been addressed – it’s a private issue,” he said. “It is a covenant that runs with the land in perpetuity past the 27 years.” 

The CID as proposed would cover 11 acres of the site and have a life of 20 years. It would have a five-member board of directors, including Walker, Greg Smith, Jameson Clark, John Fugitt and Sean McQueary, with the consent of the mayor and council. 

To reimburse the city for costs associated with establishing the CID, the city would receive 1.5% of district sales and use tax revenues on a quarterly basis. 

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