Funky trailer park turned into new storage facility

From left Ted Goldie and Mike Culbertson stand outside the storage facility the two are a half investors in called Pool 19 Storage in Fort Madison. The facility is located where the former Town and Country Mobile Home Park was located. Photo by Chuck Vandenberg/PCC

BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
PCC EDITOR

FORT MADISON – Two years ago driving through the Town & Country Mobile Home Park south of 1400 block of Avenue I wasn’t for the faint of heart.

But now the 1.3 acres of manicured landscape is void of any broken windows and tattered siding, overgrowth of shrubbery, and other unsavory nonsense. A brand new 32-unit storage facility called Pool 19 Storage has taken life on the property.

The land was acquired by MM Real Estate, LLC, owned by Michael Mohrfeld, from the City of Fort Madison, who took over the property on a tax default in 2020.

Mohrfeld originally was going to use the property as a parking area for his Mohrfeld Electric vehicles and equipment, but he was approached by a couple investors who were interested in building storage facilities including garages for motor homes, boats and cars, and other smaller personal bays.

Mike Culbertson, one of the investors, said he wanted to build a garage for his boat, but ran into a snag with his wife about the new construction. So instead of building a garage on the family’s property, Culbertson partnered with Ted Goldie and Wade Knoke to invest in about 11,000 square feet of garages.

“My wife said I had to share this part of the story,” Culbertson said. “I wanted to build another garage at my house in the lot next to me and she didn’t want a garage there.”

“We were out on the deck one night and Ted and I came up with the idea.”

Since that time Mohrfeld joined in on the project along with Wade Knoke.

A new storage facility is now open behind the 1400 block of Avenue I in Fort Madison called Pool 19 Storage, LLC. The facilities sit where the former Town & Country Mobile Home Park was in the city. Courtesy photo.

The partnership is now a four-way venture including Wade and Amanda Knoke, Ted and Mindy Goldie, Michael and Jillian Mohrfeld, and Mike and Kim Culbertson operating as Pool 19 Storage, LLC.

Goldie said there wasn’t really a plan to begin with, but they started looking at the property as a place to maybe store his newly purchased boat.

“I bought a boat this spring and started looking for a place to put it. Nothing. Couldn’t find anything. I’ve been friends of Mike for a long time and we sat and had drinks one night and said we needed a place to put our boats, and came up with this brainchild,” Goldie said.

“Talked to Michael Mohrfeld and knew he had this property. We brought him into the fold and everything else is history.”

Goldie said he started talking to other boaters and the people at local marinas who said they get 100s of calls a year from people who don’t have a place to store their boats or campers.

The facility has four larger garages that can hold motor homes, 14 mid-size units for boats and campers, and then on the back side of the first construction are 14 units that are 13 x 10 with walls dividing each bay.

Plans are underway for a similar, but not identical, property on the other side of the lot. The entire facility is behind a gated chain link fence. Renters will need to enter a passcode or use a remote to get into the facility through a locked gate, once installed.

Goldie said it was nice to transition the property into something usable.

“That was also a factor. This was a pretty bad eyesore and a bad part of town at one point. What a better thing to pretty it up and add it to the tax base,” he said.

Mohrfeld has owned the property for close to two years and started cleaning up the property last year. Goldie said the investors came to him in late spring with the idea.

“He was on board almost immediately. We had a couple meetings and decided to run with it,” Goldie said. “The building was put up in late July and everything else was completed in the next three months.”

The larger units are $240/month with a month free if you pay for the year in advance. The 14 mid-size units are $150/month with the same deal, and the smaller back units are $70 a month.

The four family couples will be holding an open house on Saturday from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. with hors d’oeuvres, refreshments, and candy for children on hand. A tour of the facilities will also be available for viewing the bays.

Visitors can enter on the 15th Street side just past Avenue I heading south on the west side of the block.

More information on the facility can be found at the group’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/Pool-19-Storage-104870758587348.

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