LEADER-Cass County staff will draft a generalized layout for future use of the approximately 55 acres the county bought from the state for $1.

The thought when the county bought Ah-Gwah-Ching was the site could serve as a future site for county government offices and a health care center.

Tuesday, June 18, the county board learned BCH Builders LLC has indicated interest in developing a portion of the property with maintenance-free housing for people age 55 and older, plus a "Toy Barn" (storage units in a single building where residents of the homes could store their recreational equipment or excess household furnishings).

While Cass County Economic Development Director Mike Paulus is hopeful the residences could attract a health clinic to the site, the county is skeptical the storage units would qualify for the site.

BCH is asking for 5 acres of the site.

There is land north of the county's, which the state sold to a private party, which could be used for the storage units. The county recommended the developer consider that option.

The county's deed from the state stipulates the county would have to sell at current market value any of its land not used for government, health care or housing.

Any other use would have to be sold at current market value as set by an independent third party, according to the county's deed from the state.

The layout county staff will create will show areas needed for government buildings and where those would be located as well as areas, which could be used for health care facilities and for residential use.

After that is available, the county board will proceed with a decision on whether to encourage BCH to continue with their development.

Commissioners Scott Bruns and Jeff Peterson, Walker Mayor Jed Shaw and Councilor Gary Wilkening sit on the Ah-Gwah-Ching site committee.