Thursday, June 3, 2004

Homes plan clears hurdle

85-lot subdivision gets first approval

By Brenna R. Kelly
The Cincinnati Enquirer

BURLINGTON - A retooled plan to develop 17 acres along Boone Aire Road cleared its first hurdle Wednesday night.

Grand Communities, whose first plan to build condominiums on the site was denied, is now planning an 85-home subdivision.

The full 15-member Planning Commission will vote on the proposed 85-home subdivision on Boone Aire Road June 16 at 7 p.m. in Courtroom 3A in the County Administration Building, 2950 Washington St., Burlington.
Boone County Planning Commission's zone change committee approved the plan in a 4-to-1 vote.

Nearby residents in The Links subdivision oppose the development, saying it will lower their property values, bring more traffic to the area and will not be compatible with their neighborhood.

"I am a little disappointed in this," said resident Lloyd Friend.

He wanted the committee to stick to a plan approved for the site in 1988. That plan allows 90 town homes in 26 buildings, creating more open space. Developers are seeking a change in that plan for the single-family homes.

"People built houses there based on what was already approved and now it's gotten changed drastically," Friend said.

Four houses on Glen Arbor Drive will back up to the proposed subdivision. One of those houses will have five lots behind it because lots in the proposed development will be about 4,000 square feet. Home sites in The Links are about 20,000 square feet.

As a condition for approval, the committee told Grand Communities that the lots that back up to Glen Arbor would have to have wider back yards. Evergreen trees also would have to be planted in the existing tree line in that area.

"The trees are a buffer now, but those will be gone in the winter," said Chris Davis, who lives on Glen Arbor. "We knew something would go there, but we expected it to be in accordance with the current zoning."

In addition to planting trees, the committee also required the developer to add a parking pad to homes with a one-car garage and insulate the houses for airport noise.

Though the area is not inside the airport's 65-decibel noise contour, the line is in the process of being redrawn and the site may be included.

"It's hard for me to believe this won't be in the contour," said Commissioner Susan Poston. "Planes almost land on that property."

Grand Communities, a unit of Fischer Homes, submitted the new plan about a month after Fiscal Court unanimously rejected their plan for condos April 20.

That plan called for 187 condos in 14 two-story buildings. Fiscal court members said the development was too dense - 10.63 units per acre.

The new plan does not need a change in zoning, only a change in the 1988 concept development plan.

Only planning commission member Randy Barlow voted against the subdivision plan. The plan will now go to the full planning commission.


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