Agreement Reached in Bryan Land Dispute

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A condemnation hearing set for Friday won't happen after all, because the City of Bryan and the owners of Chief's Automotive have finally agreed on the sale of downtown property to the city.

It's the final piece of property needed by the city to go ahead with the construction of their new Justice Center, which will house the Bryan Police Department and other city agencies. The owners of Chief's, the Peterson family, have been at odds with the city over the sale price.

As per the agreement, the Petersons will receive $150,000 for the property. In addition, a $100,000 escrow fund will be set up by the city for the clean up of the area. Any of that money not spent will go to the Petersons. For example, if $30,000 is spent, the remaining $70,000 in that escrow will go to Chief's owners, along with the $150,000.

The amount of work to be done on the property will be determined by the Texas Commission for Environmental Quality. This was one of the sticking points in negociations.

"They're satisfied. We're satisfied," said Charles Sebesta, who has been representing the Petersons. "We feel like it's a fair and equitable agreement for all parties. I think the city's protected. As I said, there were more communication issues than anything else, and once we resolved those, we were able to resolve the whole thing."