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Downtown Williston project approved

WILLISTON -- City commissioners here voted 4-1 Thursday to sell a city parking lot to a Chicago developer who plans a $16 million retail, residential and office complex.

Supporters of the six-story Renaissance on Main project say the private investment will revitalize downtown Williston, while opponents say the loss of parking could hurt existing businesses.

The city will sell the lot to Nancy Kapp, president and CEO of The Renaissance Companies, for $300,000. The agreement prevents Kapp from flipping the property.

Commissioner Tate Cymbaluk opposed the contract. Commissioner Howard Klug said although he voted to support the contract, he previously voted no to selling the lot and maintains that a parking study should have been completed prior to the sale.

Mayor Ward Koeser said he worries that if city leaders wait, private investors may no longer be interested in preserving downtown.