The Longview City Council advanced two phases of the incoming Mount Solo neighborhood during the Thursday night meeting.
The council approved the final plats for phase 2 of the development, which will allow construction to begin on 16 homes. Councilmembers also advanced the initial plats for phases 4 and 5 that will prepare an additional 76 home lots.
The Mount Solo development is being built south of the Heron Pointe neighborhood on the west side of Longview by the Hinton Development Corporation. The 160-home neighborhood will be Longview’s first new subdivision in more than a decade once all five phases of construction have been completed.
Councilmember Mike Wallin said the project played a significant role in the process of addressing Longview’s housing crisis, even if the stand-alone home prices and the lengthy community bylaws would limit the potential residents.
“It won’t be the most affordable. It won’t be the most expensive, but this is just a part of our overall housing solutions that we need to be working on,” Wallin said.
Preliminary plats allow the city and developer to lay out where homes will be located and begin work on street and utility infrastructure. Once that work has been completed, the final plat approval is needed to begin building homes.
The first phase of Mount Solo was approved earlier this year and 14 homes are in the process of being built and sold. Hinton Development project manager Joe Melo said in August the work to prepare phases 4 and 5 likely will take place during the spring.
Later during the council meeting, City Manager Kurt Sacha outlined a strong financial report for the city during the second quarter of 2021. Longview was on track to have more than $40 million in the general fund by the end of the year, which would be more than a million dollars ahead of the budgeted revenue.
Sacha said between the increased revenue and city expenses coming in slightly lower than expected, the city would have millions of general fund dollars to potentially use on projects.
“What we show here is an opportunity for us here in the city to address some of those needs that we have,” Sacha said.
The biggest jump in city revenue came from sales taxes. April and June were Longview’s first two months since at least 2016 to record more than a million dollars in sales taxes. The sales in April represented a 40% increase from the same month in the previous two years.