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On October 18, 2004, the City approved the Crackerneck Creek Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Plan. The Crackerneck Creek TIF Plan provides for the development and construction of a proposed 450,000 square foot commercial retail center. The Crackerneck Creek Project (the Project) is scheduled to include (i) the Bass Pro Store described below, (ii) a minimum of 300,000 square feet of additional retail space and (iii) a hotel. In January 2010, a 55,000 square foot Hobby Lobby opened and in late 2009 a 23,000 square foot Mardel opened. During early 2011, an 8,000 square foot Cheddar’s Restaurant opened. In March 2015, Stoney Creek Hotel & Conference Center opened with 167 guest rooms and 30,000 square feet of conference space. The City and the developer remain in discussions regarding securing additional retail development for the project. However, no additional agreements exist requiring any retailers to open for business in the Crackerneck Creek Redevelopment Area other than Bass Pro.
As part of the Project, the City has entered into the Lease Agreement (as amended from time to time, the “Bass Pro Lease”) with Bass Pro Outdoor World L.L.C. (“Bass Pro”). Pursuant to the Bass Pro Lease the City will own a 150,000 square foot Bass Pro retail store (the “Bass Pro Store”) and will lease the Bass Pro Store to Bass Pro under the terms and conditions as contained in the Bass Pro Lease. Under the Bass Pro Lease, the City was obligated to make $25,000,000 available to Bass Pro. This amount was funded from the proceeds of the Series 2006A Bonds. The Bass Pro Store is located on an approximate 20-acre parcel owned by the City.
The initial term of the Bass Pro Lease is 20 years. Bass Pro has various renewal options under the lease agreement. During the initial 20-year term, Bass Pro is required to pay the City “Percentage Rent” rent equal to 2% of “Gross Sales” as defined in the Bass Pro Lease except that the “Minimum Percentage Rent” will not be less than of $1,000,000 during each year of the initial term. During any of the nine one-year renewal options, Bass Pro will pay rent equal to $10 per year provided the TIF bond financing provided by the City in a maximum of $35,000,000 has been paid in full, or until the expiration of the third one-year renewal option (whichever occurs first), Bass Pro shall be obligated to pay $1,000,000 per year to the City. During any of the three five-year renewal options, Bass Pro will pay rent equal to 1% of “Gross Sales” as defined in the lease agreement. A summary of the minimum rental payments due for this operating lease are as follows:
Under the Bass Pro Lease, Bass Pro has the option to purchase the Bass Pro Store at the expiration of the 20-year initial term and at the expiration of any renewal option for a purchase price equal to 90% of the fair market value thereof as determined by an appraisal. Also under the Lease the City constructed an approximate 15-acre lake and an additional wilderness habitat area of approximately 15 acres. The City park includes a waterfall and presents a unique natural setting. The City also constructed 600 parking spaces adjacent to the Bass Pro Store.