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Ashby getting ready for city showcase [UPDATED]

Published 9:57am Tuesday, October 22, 2013 Updated 12:01pm Tuesday, October 22, 2013

In 2005, the city of Ashby made 38 lots available for public purchase at a residential development known as Ashby Country View Estates on the northeast side of town. Some of the lots sold quickly, but the slumping housing market of the late 2000’s made the majority of the lots open.

Now, about five years since selling any of the lots, the city is trying a different tactic.

The Ashby Area Showcase is scheduled for 5 p.m. Nov. 6 at Ashby Public School. The Showcase is designed to make people aware of new pricing for these lots, as well as information on the school and various city businesses, according to city clerk/treasurer Val Martin.

“We absolutely want people from Ashby there, but we also want to showcase what Ashby is about to people outside of our community,” Martin said.

The initial planning for the showcase started with a desire to let people know of price changes on this city land. Previously, the lot prices and assessment were different number. Now, the city has combined those two into one clearer figure.

“We thought, because prices in housing have gone down, maybe we need to reprice the lots so that the assessment is included in the price of the lot,” Martin said.

Those who purchase one of the lots before the end of the year will also see their water and sanitary sewer hook-up fees waived, a $1,500 savings. The city will also give these buyers free utilities for 12 months, up to $120 per month.

During the Showcase, there will be information on how these financing changes could affect those interested in purchasing a lot. There will also be information on how much it costs to build a house and different insurance options for homeowners.

But from the beginning planning stages, which focused exclusively on these city lots, Martin and other officials moved toward getting other groups involved. Martin approached Ashby Public School principal Shane Tappe about being part of the showcase and Tappe was enthusiastic about participating.

“Things like this are what makes a community successful,” Tappe said. “We have to build for the future, and that is what this is intended to do.”

Tappe will focus his part of the presentation on the strides made by the school in its test scores, which he said improved greatly at the elementary level and also went up at the high school level.

Members of the school’s student council and National Honor Society also will be at the event, Tappe said.

Ashby businesses are also able to have a space at the event, according to Martin. These businesses will not be able to sell any products at the Showcase, but can give out information to the public.

The informational session during the Showcase will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the school cafeteria. There will be prizes and a free dinner.

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