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Green Bay Mayor Schmitt touts direction of city during annual address


GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt gave his annual State of the City address on Wednesday, saying he's never felt more confident about the city's goals.

In front of several hundred people at the Meyer Theatre, Schmitt touted the future of Titletown.

“There's a lot of great things happening and more importantly there's a lot of good things coming,” said Schmitt.

One of those things is a rebirth of the old Hotel Northland. The owners accepted an offer from an Iowa company to restore the downtown hotel. The city estimates the project will cost between $25 million and $30 million.

“This is our number one priority right now,” said Schmitt. “Everything else is pretty much on track. We want to make sure we can get the financing together to get this thing done.”

Schmitt also said the goal to bring 200 new market rate housing units to downtown by 2015 is on track.

The mayor wants to create a Greater Green Bay community by 2025. He wants all communities with Green Bay mailing addresses to share services and have a unified tax rate.

“I think we're all in this together,” said Schmitt. “We're all here for economic development, for a fair tax base and I think we could really look at being more regional.”

After the mayor's speech, city aldermen in attendance told us they didn't have concerns about the direction the city is headed.

“I think it was very informational and I liked what he was saying and I think we're going in the right direction,” said Alderman Tom De Wane.

Some of the other topics Schmitt talked about were education, neighborhoods, homelessness, and city events.