CITY APPROVES DEVELOPMENT AGREEMENT FOR ROCK RIVER RIDGE

Watertown, Wis. (June 19, 2024) – The City of Watertown’s Common Council last night approved a development agreement between the City and the Greater Watertown Community Health Foundation to develop new owner occupied housing on nearly 40 acres of land, which is situated on the former Bethesda property at 700 Hoffman Drive on the City’s southwest side.

The agreement follows over a year of planning and negotiation between the City and the Foundation. Mayor Emily McFarland shared her enthusiasm for the development. "This is the culmination of years of visioning and planning by many people. We are grateful for the forward thinking leadership shown by Tina Crave, Nate Peters, the Board, and their entire team at the Foundation. They recognized what a transformational opportunity could be realized by moving this project forward. Not only will this new planned neighborhood address the much-discussed housing shortage in Watertown, but it will also add tremendous economic value to our community by bringing this land back on the tax rolls,” said McFarland.

The new subdivision will be constructed across multiple phases. A total of 78 single-family homes and 18 twin home units will be part of the neighborhood. A separate multifamily housing development will be part of a second development agreement, which will be reviewed later this year.

McFarland added: “I’m very appreciative of all the hard work from our City team that went into making this happen. It took many meetings and hours of careful planning. We are also grateful for the leadership shown by the alders and members of the Plan Commission who supported this development.”

“Everyone I talk to, from local realtors to major employers, as well as our regional economic development partners, has stressed our identified need for more housing, both owner-occupied and rental. This new housing development furthers the revitalization of Watertown which has been ongoing for the past several years. This is going to be a catalyst for economic growth in Watertown for years to come,” said Mason Becker, the City’s
Strategic Initiatives and Development Coordinator.

A new City park and a walking trail will also be part of the planned subdivision. Final steps, such as City approval of the final plat for the site and zoning map amendments are scheduled. Site work and grading to prepare the
land for construction is planned to begin in July.