CS Convention Center in County's Hands

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It's now up to Brazos County. The city of College Station has asked commissioners to approve a tax increment finance zone to fund the city's hotel-conference center project. This is the first time the city has proposed the TIF at Northgate, and the third try for a convention center.

In August the city of College Station set its sights on Northgate, the proposed site of a $25 million hotel and convention center.

"I think it's finally coming to fruition this is something we've been working on for many many years and now we finally have an idea that we feel is going to work," City of College Station Council member Chris Scotti said.

Tuesday, the city put the ball in Brazos County's court asking for approval of a tax increment finance zone around North gate.

"We're looking at approximately $150 million today of new development in the North gate tax increment zone and that basic additional value would be what would flow into the TIF and would be used to pay for the convention center," City of College Station Council member Ron Gay said.

At first the city was to ask the county for a 30 year commitment, but Tuesday bumped it down 10 years.

"That's really in case you know there's any economic hiccups from a national level that end up affecting the Bryan, college station community," Charles Wood with the City of College Station said.

Brazos County Judge Randy Sims has voiced concern over the lengthy time commitment and fellow commissioners agree.

"We cannot give up our resources say over a long period of time as a city like Bryan and College Station, so as a consequence we're going to have to compromise 30 years, 20 years that's a long time," Brazos County Commissioner Carey Cauley

College Station says the current property taxes will stay within the city budget, and sales taxes from the TIF will not be used.

"The question is will it happen without this TIF and I think that's really important because I don't know if a lot of it will happen without it,"
Wood said.

The city has tried twice in recent years to complete this project, including an attempt to build in the wolf pen creek park area. Both attempts failed.

Commissioners will discuss the proposal; a decision date had not been announced.