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Board continues negotiations with Miracle Village owners

Actual well-testing likely to begin at site sometime next month

April 20, 2006

The Village Board was scheduled to take up approval of a water study and well installation April 18, after the Banner-Press' deadline.

Well-testing at a 79-acre "business park" development -- Miracle Village -- will likely begin soon near Goldendale and Holy Hill roads.

Village Administrator Christopher Lear said in an interview April 17 that Miracle Homes co-owners Tom and Jacquie Hignite may now pay up to $70,000 to fund a hydrology study and installation of a high-capacity well at the site.

The Village Board had directed a study costing $55,000 last month.

Commissioned earlier this year, the study will evaluate the effect of a large, powerful well on the potential multimillion dollar development on nearby water wells, located almost exclusively on residences and farms.

Preliminary work has already begun on the study.

Lear said drilling to conduct well-testing will also serve a second purpose.

One well will be installed

Hydrologist Jim Drought of Milwaukee-based Shaw Environmental is in charge of the project. Drought has been retained by the village as an independent consultant but will be paid by the Hignites, who are well-known homebuilders in the area.

Lear said the Hignites initially sought to build as many as four high-capacity wells on the site. For now, though, it appears only one high-capacity well will be installed.

Drought wrote in an April 7 e-mail to Lear, a public meeting in Germantown earlier this month indicated residents near the Miracle Village site "preferred installation of the deep sandstone well, rather than completion of the well in the dolomite aquifer."

Lear said that will drop the Miracle Village well bottom from about 400 feet to 900 feet.

Actual testing is anticipated to begin next month.

Project on hold for study

Miracle Homes Project Manager Claus Reichmann said he didn't know when work would begin on the office building, the first Miracle Village building scheduled for construction. About 80 Miracle Homes employees will move in when its ready. The firm is now located in the town of Polk.

"It should take about six to eight months (to build) once we get started," Reichmann said earlier this week.

Phase 1 of the multiphase development includes plans for a two-story office building/conference center, storage facility, auditorium/training facility, recreation center, bathhouse, horse stable, sales office, 12 model homes, a minigolf area, tennis courts, volleyball courts, swimming pool, patio, walking trails, a pond and a beach area.

Two single-family residences were also included in the design, which had been approved but has since been put on hold. Because the Germantown Village Board voted to halt construction, no activity will be permitted at the site at least until late December.

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