Saturday, July 11, 2009

Property search for Midfield land

Friday's commentary and comments on the grassy area at the corner of College and Broad Street raised questions about who owns the land. One of the questions had a conspiratorial mysteriousness to it, piquing my curiosity. Fortunately all records of every parcel of land in Middletown, going back centuries, are publicly available: every sale, lien, and deed restriction is free for anybody to see at City Hall.

Determining the current owner of any parcel, as well as its assessed value, is even easier. The Planning Department has a GIS Property Search function on its web site, making it very easy to identify ownership of any parcel from a map view of Middletown.

The grassy area actually spans two lots, both owned by Midfield Corporation, one containing the big office building, and a second smaller lot on the corner. That smaller lot, 138 College Street, was the subject of discussion at the most recent Economic Development Committee meeting. The EDC voted to take the first step towards legally forcing Midfield to develop that land, which was part of an agreement between Midfield and the City.

Below is a screenshot of one of the views available through the City's GIS Property search. The Midfield owned parcel in question is in yellow (138 College Street), Midfield also owns the two large lots spanning from College to Court. According to the Property Record Card, Midfield bought 138 Court Street in 1991, it is valued at $136,500 and assessed at $95,550.

It remains possible that there are secret agreements, or even deed restrictions (available at City Hall), that could restore a sense of mystery and conspiracy to this property. But the legal ownership seems pretty clear.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That lot has been empty for so long it should be left that way. Perhaps a small park is in order. Why do we need to overdevelop the location. A little green pocket at that location is very pleasant. Middletown should have thought twice about forcing out small property owners for large scale developemnt in the first place. Let this be a lesson. Wait! What happened in New London? Land was taken for private developnment and now sits empty.