City Faces Lawsuit over CenterPoint Mall
Nate Enwald
The owner of Center Point Mall has filed a lawsuit against the city of Stevens Point to halt its condemnation and return development control to Third Court LLC, a Valley Bank of Iowa entity.

The City of Stevens Point along with the Community Development Authority (CDA) have deemed the site "blighted" (in need of removal) and are seeking to demolish parts or all of it, to be eventually replaced by Mid-State Tech College (MSTC).

Third Court LLC is requesting for a permanent injunction prohibiting the CDA and the city government from taking control and tearing down the Center Point Mall.

According to the lawsuit, "By proceeding to exercise eminent domain authority over the Center Point Mall, the city and the CDA have breached agreements and/or duty of good faith and fair dealing with Third Court."
​A corner of the almost entirely vacant CenterPoint MarketPlace mall.
Photos by Samantha Feld
The lawsuit claims that the city and the CDA were the cause of said "blight" and in turn negates the claim by the city. In other words, they claim the city can’t seize and demolish a building for problems they caused.

Also, Valley Bank’s lawsuit claims that tearing down the mall to replace it with a new MSTC branch violates previous operating agreements between the two entities to keep the mall a "first class retail shopping center."

"The City and the CDA are obligated to support the covenants of the Operating Agreements," Third Court LLC said. The city’s latest bid to the mall’s holding company was $910,000, but Valley Bank has rejected the offer.

The case has been set to be heard by Judge Thomas Flugaur on January 17, 2012. The city attorney’s office was not available for comment on short notice, but remained open to further inquiry on a later date.