Another opportunity for the city of Fergus Falls to do something with the former Regional Treatment Center fell short as the city council terminated an agreement with American Covenant Senior Housing Incorporated (ACSHI).
ACSHI was looking to build two separate apartment housing projects. But after housing infrastructure bonds fell through, ACSHI did not have the financial wherewithal to continue with the project.
This has become disheartening for those in the community as the campus and its structure have been scrutinized for well over a decade. The letter of intent that was signed by ACSHI brought hope to many that the campus would again provide taxable income to the city and allow developers to move on from the project.
Instead, we are back at square one. According to City Administration Andrew Bremseth, it was understood that the bonding dollars were important to getting the project done and that ACSHI was “forthright and transparent” during the process.
Mayor Ben Schierer is hopeful that replating the grounds will allow for new opportunities in development and preservation. Council member Anthony Hicks also stated that it takes “deep pockets” in order to develop a campus that large.
We hope replating the property into three parcels will inspire developers to take a closer look at the former RTC. We hope that in the future, the time it took to find the right partner(s) pays off for those that have worked hard on the project and the city itself.