|Intermodal Review Committee||Intermodal Project Library|
|Intermodal and Logisitcs Parks Maps and Pictures||Ballot Question (Nov. 2006)|
--December 18, 2009
The City of Gardner received noticed that the BNSF intermodal facility project has been permitted for the necessary stream relocation through receipt of a 404 permit from the US Environmental Protection Agency, Region 7. To learn more click here.
--August 3, 2009
The Gardner City Council deannexed the property for the KC Logistics Hub owned by BNSF. After publication in the Gardner News, the City of Gardner will no longer be responsible for services in the area. Next steps related to this project are to be determined. On June 22nd, the City Council voted to rescind agreements and to deannex the property. At that time, the Council indicated a willingness to renegoitate the agreements, but was required to deannex the property before those talks could be restarted with BNSF.
--July 20, 2009
The US Army Corps of Engineers extended its comment period from July 31 to August 9, 2009, for the 404 permit for the BNSF Intermodal Facility. To view the Draft Environment Assessment, click here. This is a very large document and will take several minutes to load on older computers.
--June 22, 2009
On June 22nd, 2009, at a Special City Council meeting the City Council voted to rescind the current agreements (Annexation, Financial, and Project) for the Intermodal Facility and Logistics Park, authorize all necessary steps to deannex the property and request BNSF, the Allen Group, and Johnson County to negotiate new agreements. The City of Gardner will prepare to meet again with the developer to renegoitate the agreements and concurrently start the process of deannexation in July 2009. The developer has also indicated it will pursue negotiations for an agreement with the City of Edgerton, KS.
On June 10th the Gardner City Council met to discuss the Intermodal project with representatives from KDOT, BNSF and The Allen Group. The City Council discussed KDOT and BNSF submission for $50 million in TIGER Funds that are stimulus dollars or American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. These dollars if award to the project would allow BNSF to take the project off delay and start construction in 2010. BNSF and The Allen Group are looking for a committment from the City of Gardner to move forward with the agreements approved by the City Council in September 2008, allowing for minor adjustments to the agreements. The City Council will meet again in the month of June to give direction to BNSF and The Allen Group as to whether or not they want to move forward with the agreements approved in 2008 or if they want to retract those agreements, including the possibility of deannexation.
BNSF also announced that they anticipate the release of the 404 permit by the Army Corp of Engineers by this fall. A thirty day comment period will then happen on the document, with thirty days for response. The permit is to allow the relocation on an unamed tributary to Little Bull Creek that runs through the 1,200 acre site just to the west of Waverly Road and south of 56 Hwy. BNSF also stated that they will be storing the electric cranes for the project on a 7 acre site at New Century Air Center this summer as they are completed for the project. The cranes will be moved from the New Century site when the intermodal site is ready to house them permanently. These cranes where part of the Intermodal Review Committee recommendations as they are cleaner for the environment than the traditional diesel cranes.
BNSF announces a delay to the construction of the intermodal project before the potential release of the necessary 404 permit for the site. BNSF stated in a letter to Gardner's Mayor that the slow down in the economy has made it necessary to delay the project. To see the letter to the Mayor, click here.
BNSF announced on January 15, 2009, that it has completed its submission of information to the US Army Corp of Engineers. This starts an approximate 60 day clock for the Corp to complete its findings before issuance or denial of a 404 permit. If the permit is issued later this spring, BNSF anticipates starting construction this summer on the intermodal facility.
City releases Newsletter to discuss Intermodal Financing Plan and Annexation.
After many months of negotiations related to the Logistics Hub KC and the BNSF Intermodal facility, the Gardner City Council received finalized annexation and development agreements for consideration in September. The Council deliberated over the issue during two different meetings before approving the annexation of 1,003 acres of land located south of 56 Hwy and north of 191st Street, primarily to the west of Waverly Road, with about 83 acres to the northeast of 183rd and Waverly Road. The development agreements that were approved along with the annexation detail the variety of infrastructure improvements necessary for the project and state who is responsible for the improvements. Revenues from the site will cover the cost for the City’s share of the projects.
Along with Gardner’s participation in the project, Johnson County has also agreed to support the project by constructing 191st Street from just west of Center Street to Four Corners Road at a cost of approximately $14 million dollars. Construction on 191st Street to improve it from gravel to a city standard road will begin in 2009. The City of Gardner has agreed to improve Waverly Road from 56 Highway south to 191st Street and 183rd between Poplar and Waverly Roads for an estimated amount of $13.2 million, once the Allen Group of Kansas has started constructing no less than 1.5 million sq. ft of warehousing. This ensures that the City of Gardner will not spend dollars on infrastructure unless the development has vertical construction guaranteeing future funding sources.
Though not a part of the agreements, Kansas Department of Transportation has also committed to constructing a new interchange south of the Gardner Road exit along I-35 to service the facility. Once the new interchange is constructed, the City will construct a connector from 191st Street to the new interchange at an estimated cost of $4.2 million.
After notice of signed leases for construction of a total of 3 million sq. ft. the City will then construct a connector road from 191st St. to the north side of Logistics Hub KC. The cost for this connector is estimated at $7 million. Additionally, the North Waverly Bridge at $4.4 million will be built when monies become available.
City wastewater service will be provided to the site for $2.5 million. The Allen Group of Kansas has agreed to place into escrow $1 million dollars toward the wastewater improvements. BNSF will also place $3.1 million into escrow for Waverly Road improvements in lieu of paying the street excise tax. Monies placed into the escrow will only be released in increments after 4.68 million sq. ft of warehousing is under construction or after ten years has past and the City of Gardner provides the tax abatements as agreed to in the development agreement, as stated below.
The development agreement approved by the City Council does provide for a total 65% tax abatement, instead of the originally approved 85%. The developer will be paying an annual fee with the tax abatement equaling 15% of the taxes, thereby creating a net 50% abatement for the property. In reducing the annual fee from the prior agreement, the City reduced the amount of offsite improvements that were included, such as the Center Street bridge widening to four lanes and the second overpass on Waverly Road. BNSF will be replacing the Center Bridge as part of the project, but the City will not be widening the bridge with two additional lanes due to lack of funding. BNSF plans to open the intermodal facility in late 2010.
The Kansas State Legislature passed out of both houses a bill that would have provided the City of Gardner a mechanism to fund the public infrastructure. The Legislature combined this bill with the bill for the coal fired power plants that the Governor had previously vetoed. In late May, the Governor also vetoed the combined legislation. The City Council will discuss options related to this project later this summer after completing its 2009 Budget.
The Kansas Legislature is still working on finalizing its yearly session. As part of the conclusion of the session, the Legislature is considering several items, including approval of Senate Substitue for House Bill 2412. This bill includes the financing mechanism necessary for the infrastructure for Logistics Hub KC. As of May 6, 2008, the Senate had approved the bill and sent it to the House for consideration.
On March 12, 2008, the Gardner City Council voted to approve a Concept Finance Plan for the Logistics Hub KC project. The Council endorsed the concept plan so that representatives from the Kansas Department of Transportation introduce a bill to allow for State backing of the loans necessary to complete the public infrastructure need for the site, which totals approximately $63 million. SB 693 was introduced to the Senate Commerce Committee on March 19, 2008, which creates an intermodal revolving loan fund, similar to the State's transportation revolving load fund. This fund would be used for financing the $63 million in public roadway improvements, such as Waverly Road, 191st Street, and overpasses. This legislation does not include funding for the new interchange, mentioned below that is estimated at $20,000,000 or improvements to the Gardner Road interchange at approximately $2 million. The interchange improvements will be financed by the Kansas Department of Transportation.
SB 693 was approved by the Senate Commerce Committee on March 31st, 2008 and passed by the Senate by a 34-4 vote on April 2, 2008 and has been introduced into the House of Representatives. If signed into law by the Governor, this will allow the City to enter into final negotiations for the project. It is estimated that a development agreement and annexation request would occur in June 2008.
The draft Break-in-Access Study for new I-35 interchange was submitted to the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) on November 7th, 2007 by HDR Consulting. The Break-in-Access Study indicates the need for a new interchange somewhere in between 199th and Homestead along I-35. KDOT has also provided the City of Gardner with an agreement to complete upgrades to the Gardner Road interchange as an interim step while a new interchange is being constructed per the Break-in-Access Study recommendations. Additionally, KDOT continues to work on other plans for I-35 due to the growth of Southwest Johnson County, which include possible additional lanes, working with the Kansas State Patrol to move the weigh station further south into Miami County and other improvements to provide better traffic flow into the future.
On November 5th, the Gardner City Council authorized a pre-funding agreement with the Allen Group of Kansas for the cost of the City’s consultants for work done in relation to the proposed KC Logistics Hub. This includes IRR, City Attorney Hubbard, Olson Engineering, and Kutak Rock bond attorney. Per the City Council approval, this agreement does not allow for reimbursement for Springsted Financial Advisors, they will be paid from other City funding sources. The pre-funding agreement pays for the cost of the service to review the proposals from BNSF and the Allen Group related to financing of roadway and other necessary infrastructure improvements and does not charge the taxpayers of Gardner for those services. The Allen Group pays the City a down payment for which the City draws down upon as it receives invoices from the parties listed above. This is a typical type of arrangement in major development projects, where the cost for reviewing information can be very high for a local government to bear.
Other items of note:
* BNSF announces the use of electric cranes at the KC Logistics Hub, which are considered to be far more environmentally sound than diesel cranes.
* BNSF and the Allen Group have entered into an agreement related to development of the KC Logistics Hub in late April. The Allen Group has several milestones to meet in satisfying their arrangements over the next couple of months to a year.
Intermodal Correspondence --2007
This portion of the site contains key communication between the City of Gardner, BNSF, KDOT, and attorneys. To read correspondence visit the Intermodal Correspondence page.
Intermodal and Logistics Park Maps and Pictures
This portion of the site include maps of the proposed site for Gardner. It also contains photos taken at the Alliance, Texas and Elwood, IL facilities.
Intermodal Review Committee --2006
The Gardner City Council appointed a committee in April 2006 to review the proposed BNSF Intermodal and Logistics Park concept. The Committee met through June and compiled information related to the project, which was submitted to the City Council on July 10th, 2006. To read the committees findings and related information visit the Intermodal Review Committee page.