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Cascadia developers out of time to pay off debt, property goes to auction
The developers of Cascadia, the planned community south of Bonney Lake that never came to pass, have been told by a bankruptcy judge they have no more time to restructure their debt. Parcels of the property will be auctioned off Friday on the steps of the County-City Building in Tacoma.
The Cascadia Project LLC filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on October 11, 2009, after financier Homestreet Bank foreclosed on $75 million in loans.
The bankruptcy proceedings began June 22 under the jurisdiction of Judge Karen Overstreet in the U.S. Bankruptcy court in Seattle. Representatives for Cascadia presented a plan for refinancing that would have involved a purchase by three companies and the ouster of Patrick Kuo as president of the developer.
Overstreet rejected the plan Wednesday Sept. 22, allowing Homestreet to proceed with the auction they planned to hold almost a year ago.
The bank plans to continue development of the property through another developer, General Counsel Godfrey Evans said.
Cascadia is a 4,200 acre land property south of Bonney Lake. Kuo, Cascadia's founder and president, purchased the land in 1991. He intended to develop a planned community with 6,500 houses accompanied by commercial properties—in short, a place that people could live and work. Work didn't begin until 2006.
Though a network of roads to nowhere run through the property, the only development that came to pass was a Sumner School District elementary campus, named Donald Eismann Elementary in August. With no native student population, the school has been used to house students and teachers from campus undergoing extensive remodels, including Victor Falls in 2009-2010 and Bonney Lake Elementary this school year.
The auction for the Cascadia parcels will take place at 10:30 a.m. Friday Sept. 24. The County-City Building is located at 930 Tacoma Avenue South in Tacoma.