CALEDONIA — Development along the Interstate 94 corridor could soon be a reality for the Village of Caledonia.
At Monday’s board meeting, the board of trustees approved its end of a water agreement with the City of Racine that would require the village to pay its share for regional water improvements. In return, Caledonia would have the right to expand utilities out toward the interstate and put itself in the hunt for future development.
The new, 40-year agreement would automatically get renewed every five years and could be terminated with a three-year notice.
Since the prior water agreement between the two municipalities recently expired, Racine has continued to sell water to the village on a wholesale basis, but only to customers located within the former boundaries.
That meant that without a new agreement there was no possibility for the village to expand water service out toward the Interstate, an area that — with utilities — could possibly attract development.
The ability to entice development, however, will come at a price. Under the current proposal, the village would have to pay a little less than $4.7 million for various infrastructure projects in the region and has established another $3.8 million in future projects.
“Right now we can’t even play the game,” said Bob Bradley, utility district president. “Nobody who owns a company and wants to build a business is going to wait for the Village of Caledonia to put in those utilities.”
The board voted unanimously Monday at the East Side Community Center, 6156 Douglas Ave., to authorize the agreement.
Village president Ron Coutts said that he thinks the village will benefit greatly from the ability to develop out toward the interstate and added that “both sides kind of win on this.”
Before being finalized the deal will also need approval from the City of Racine as well as the Public Service Commission.