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Developer considers big changes to Mississippi Dunes Golf Links

A developer is looking into reconstruction options for the Mississippi Dunes Golf Links. Katie Nelson / RiverTown Multimedia file photo1 / 2
The city council heard proposals April 18 about developing the former Mississippi Dunes Golf Links. Courtesy of the city of Cottage Grove 2 / 2

COTTAGE GROVE — A developer is considering several different redevelop routes for the former Mississippi Dunes Golf Links.

Chevalle Development proposed a multitude of options to the City Council during a workshop April 18, including some single family and senior housing; park space and river access; and maintaining the event center and some of the golf course.

Currently listed by Edina Realty for $7 million, the 185-acre site includes the golf links, event center, house and access to the Mississippi River.

The property was listed in October after Mississippi Dunes owner William "Doc" Doebler was ordered to pay $130,000 to former employees and victims of sexual harassment in a Washington County District Court ruling in August.

Developer David Igel said he's considering residential options from single-family to townhomes and villas, as well as senior housing in the northeast corner of the property.

He and the City Council have also made it clear they will priorite river access during redevelopment. The City Council has listed recreation and river access as a strategic goal for the past few years.

Igel said development on the property would likely be phased, and they may reopen nine holes from the golf links and revamp the event space either temporarily during construction or permanently.

The City Council will consider the project again during a May 2 workshop.

Obstacles

There are several hurdles to develop the site, including some bluff issues, river conservation rules and the tricky railroad bridge over 103rd Street.

Above all, the site is currently lacking municipal utilities. City staff estimated it would cost $5.8 million to run water and sewer to the properties from nearest lines on Hadley Avenue.

Even with water available, there are still concerns about perfluorochemical levels in the area.

Many of the nearby wells tested by the Minnesota Department of Health are above the recommended health index.

Despite the difficulties, Igel remains positive on the development.

"Our group is serious about it," he said. "I think there's reason for the city to be excited about it; we certainly are."

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