In Riverside there are 80 properties, much of it vacant land of an acre or so, to be voted on today



Published: 26 March 2012 06:26 PM

Riverside officials hope to sell about 80 parcels owned by the now-dissolved redevelopment agency.

Most of the plots are vacant and less than an acre, though the list includes two Victorian homes, a historic downtown building and clusters of parcels near Riverside Plaza, on University Avenue, and in the Five Points area on the city’s west end.

State legislation requires the city to discharge the former redevelopment agency’s contracts and obligations and sell assets that aren’t affordable housing or public facilities.

The City Council, which serves as the successor to the redevelopment agency board, will vote on the list today. It will be taken up Friday by the special oversight board that must sign off on the disposal of former redevelopment properties.

Officials don’t know how likely it is that the sale of the properties will recoup the original investment of taxpayer dollars.

City Development Director Emilio Ramirez said the plan is to appraise the properties and seek proposals from interested buyers, if the oversight board agrees.

“There’s been a lot of phone calls and interest, although most of it has been generic,” Ramirez said, adding that brokers want to know when properties will begin to be available and what the sale process will be.

Among the properties to be sold are the Imperial Hardware building on Main Street at University Avenue; about half of the 2700 block on the north side of University Avenue; a group of Merrill Avenue parcels once considered for an expansion of Riverside Plaza; and properties on three corners of the Five Points intersection at La Sierra Avenue and Pierce Street. Many of the properties are zoned for commercial retail development.

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