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The Town Garage, 120 Franklin Avenue; the eye of the storm . . .

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The current hot discussion topic among those who monitor Village Hall happenings is how an out of town firm was able purchase the Town Garage property from right out under the noses of Village Council members. Village ownership of the subject property (see posted photo) is seen as key to the successful construction of a municipal parking garage.

Reportedly, Village officials had offered previous owner Richard Agnello more than the $1.265 million sale price. However, it is being reported that Mr. Agnello refused to sell until the Village found a suitable location nearby for him to relocate his motor vehicle repair facility.

So the fly would like to know: 1) How was the Wells partnership able to buy the property for less than what Village officials had offered Mr. Agnello? 2) Will Mr. Agnello be closing up shop, or has the Wells partnership found a location for him to move his operation to? And, 3) What prompted the Wells partnership to purchase a piece of property destined for involvement in eminent domain proceedings?

25 thoughts on “The Town Garage, 120 Franklin Avenue; the eye of the storm . . .

  1. >Mr Agnello and sons are probobly the only good guys in this equation. This is starting to get interesting

  2. >Follow the money….

  3. >what the hell is going on.something smells not so good.like i said so many times.you thout the mob was bad,huh,hun.

  4. >this smells to high hell

  5. >love the pics ,ridgewood has a helicopter now?

  6. >that would be a good thing for ridgewood to have a helicopter so we could see more whats going on.the police would not like it.

  7. >My undserstanding is that the Village would have been restricted from entering into a transaction, in which the Village provided an alternative location for Town Garage as a condition of the sale. This would necessitate that a private buyer get involved. It is also my understanding that the Village Council had no intention of pursuing eminent domain proceedings. If this is all true, perhaps there is no smoking gun here.

    It would be nice to have a few more actual facts to present the full story. Of course, you wouldn’t want the facts to get in the way of some good gossip.

  8. >My undserstanding is that the Village would have been restricted from entering into a transaction, in which the Village provided an alternative location for Town Garage as a condition of the sale. This would necessitate that a private buyer get involved. It is also my understanding that the Village Council had no intention of pursuing eminent domain proceedings. If this is all true, perhaps there is no smoking gun here.

    **********

    So what you’re suggesting is that Wells purchased the property just to be a nice guy and help the Village out? Is he going to sell it to us at his cost? Give it a rest! This has to be the one of the dirtiest deals in Village history.

    A more plausible scenario is that someone on the inside suggested to Wells that if he owned the property, he’d most likely be given the nod to handle the entire redevelopment project, building design, construction, and all. So Wells buys the property using a shell company, based on the insider’s suggestion, with the hope that no one would ever find out it’s actually him. But the plan didn’t exactly turn out as he’d hoped.

    And what’s up with Pfund? Does he really expect us to believe that he had no idea Wells owned the property until the Ridgewood News article appeared? Again, nice try Dave!

  9. >It is also my understanding that the Village Council had no intention of pursuing eminent domain proceedings.

    so how does the village expect to get the property from wells’ group

  10. >They had to know, wouldn’t the building and/or fire departments have had to do inspections of the building on the property?

  11. >Is there something wrong with Wells buying the property? Is there anything wrong with Wells working in cooperation with the Village on this project? I don’t know if Wells has an interest in developing the site. But, if he does, what is wrong with that?

  12. >so how does the village expect to get the property from wells’ group…

    You assume that the VC had some involvement in the discussions over this transaction. If so, they would be planning to purchase it, just as they would have if Wells didn’t purchase it. Perhaps that has something to do with why Wells’ price was much lower than what had been proposed by the VC. Eminent domain proceedings would cause delays and raise ethical, leagal and financial issues that the VC, I am sure, would rather avoid.

  13. >yes it is worg you bum.because we all no we need the place for parking you dumass.what the hell is going on around hear.he cant say he did not know,if he does he full of s.,/t.thankyou your pal that knows more then you .

  14. >The one you need to meet…

    You must be very proud of yourself. You comments on this blog are so articulate and thought provoking.

    It seems clear that the site will be developed for parking. But, if you know so much more than the rest of us, perhaps you can enlighten us as to why you think that Wells will not develop the site for parking. Or, if you think he does intend to develop it for parking, please answer the original question…what is wrong with him being the developer?

  15. >First of all, I would like to see the offer that the town had made to the Agnello family. My understanding that it was almost $400,000 lower.
    The town most certainly would use eminant domain and has in the past. The existing Walnut street parking lot was acquired that way in 1971 after renting it from a private owner for ten years.

  16. >i have not a bad thing to say about the man,all i can say is i hope he will put in parking and we can fix up that block and about pese just fix it.

  17. >Anonymous 6:37…

    According to the Ridgewod News, the Village’s offer was over $1mm. So, Wells’ cash offer was much less, but included a new location for Town Garage, as part of the deal. So, it is not clear what the full value of Wells’ offer was. The town could not provide an alternative site with their offer.

    What leads you to think that the current Village Council would resort to eminant domain? It is definitely not “most certain”, just because the members of the Village Council in 1971 (36 years ago) resorted to it. By my estimation, most of the current Village Council were in high school or grade school in 1971. Unlike many of the posters on this blog, I don’t presume to know what will happen. But, at least one member of the Village Council tells me that several council members do not favor eminant domain.

    Could it possibly be that you and the Fly are wrong on this one…again?

  18. >Thus far, the Agnello family has refused to make any comment regarding their upcoming closure/relocation. Don’t you think if they were planning to move they’d want to let everyone know where they will be moving to? Something just isn’t right here.

  19. >I would agree, that none of the council FAVORS eminant domain most likely due to current public opinion on the subject. However, they do mention it as an option to undervalue properties, such as the Agnello’s. By the way… don’t believe everything that is written in the paper, or the supermarket tabloids.

  20. >No. They would not say anything until the deal is signed/sealed/delivered and they are ready to move.

    But, what concern is it to any of us ifThe Angello’s want to sell to Wells? Give it a rest, people.

  21. >”No. They would not say anything until the deal is signed/sealed/delivered and they are ready to move.”

    The deal is signed/sealed/delivered. Agnello no longer owns the property; it changed hands in November of 2006.

  22. >to the fly you bum.i think they should move to the south its nice and sunny.and hot.

  23. >some thing is not right hear at all hummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

  24. >Oh great…The Hummmmmer is back. He is always good for some intelligent comments…

    Several posts above have asked you conspiracy theorists to explain what is so illicit, shady, unlawful, unethical, or whatever else you think it may be, about this transaction. So far not one of you has presented a clear explanation. All you idiots do is spead innuendo.

    Here’s a radical idea…maybe Wells saw an opportunity to make a quick buck.

    Comsider this. The Angellos won’t move without a new site. The Village Council can’t make such a land swap as part of their offer. Wells recognizes this and steps in with a deal that satisfies the Angellos by offering a lower price than the Village’s offer, but includes a long term lease at a new site that actually saves the Angellos money and improves their cash flow. Now Wells owns the Town Garage property and is free to sell it to the Village at their original offer price for a quick $400-500K profit. Meanwhile he collects rent from the Angellos at their new site for the next ten years.

    I don’t know if this is what happened. But, if it did, all you could say about Wells is that he is a shrewd businessman, who had the foresight and financing to make it happen. By the way, if it went down this way, the Village’s interests were served because they needed a private partner to offer a land swap anyway. Furthermore, in this scenario, the Village pays the same price that the Angellos originally turned down. Notice, by the way, that this scenario did not involve any discussions between the Village Council and Wells about non-public information.

    So, I ask you Fly, Hummmmmmmer and anyone else who insists that our Mayor or Wells are involved in some nefarious scheme, what are you complaining about? That Wells saw an opportunity that you didn’t? Or, is it just that Wells is wealthier than you and a lot smarter than you (which is how he became wealthier than you to begin with)?

  25. >One has to think why the Land Rover that is now in the garage had it’s license plates purposely covered over with a piece of cardboard so the plates cannot be read?

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