Arctic chill puts Columbus car lot vote on ice

Paul Rignell
Columbus Reporter

The continuing cold that closed Minnesota schools early in the week of Jan. 6 also disrupted some airport schedules, and that ultimately led to postponing debate on a hot topic at Columbus City Hall.

Columbus Mayor Dave Povolny and the City Council agreed to continue their review of a proposal for an automobile auction lot to Wednesday, Jan. 22, after the applicants from Insurance Auto Auctions Inc. reported they could not get to their flight from Chicago to Minneapolis-St. Paul for a meeting Jan. 8.

The company wants to expand its auto auctioning business, composed of about 70 percent online bidding, with a conditional use permit for 20 acres west of Lake Drive and north of Pine Street.

Insurance Auto Auctions wants to develop a total of 60 acres for the business, including 40 acres of recent farmland located west of the existing business lot. That would require a rezoning vote and comprehensive plan amendment from the city, which has drawn greater concern from neighbors.

The auction lot would be for damaged vehicles determined to be total losses by insurance agents, dealerships or rental car companies. Insurance Auto Auctions’ policy is for all sold vehicles to leave the lot as they arrived, with no disassembly.