Saturday, July 17, 2004

Cold Spring to add homes

Plan for 140 is approved

By Patrick Crowley
Enquirer staff writer

COLD SPRING - A prolific Northern Kentucky homebuilder has received permission to build 140 homes in this Campbell County city.

The Cold Spring Planning and Zoning Commission voted this week to allow Fischer Homes of Crestview Hills to develop a community of single-family and patio homes off Buning Lane. The development is called Granite Springs and may eventually have up to 400 homes, officials said.

It is not clear when the project will start. Fischer representatives did not return phone calls to comment.

The company has developed more than 30 residential communities in Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati.

Planning Commission member Ken Warden voted in favor of the project Wednesday night because it complies with all the city's zoning requirements.

But he originally opposed the project because of safety concerns.

Buning Lane is a long, winding dead-end street that runs off of U.S. 27 just north of East Alexandria Pike.

"My concern was a safety issue," Warden said. "There is one way in and one way out for all of those homes, so I originally voted against the project."

But Fischer satisfied city council members that emergency vehicles could access the area through the old Pike 27 Drive In property, which is near where Granite Springs will be built.

City council approved Fischer's development plan and the final vote taken by the planning commission reflected the company's compliance with the Cold Spring zoning code, Warden said.

More retail space?

In another zoning matter, Warden said he expects a 10-acre piece of property near the Cold Spring Crossing shopping center to eventually be developed into retail space.

Earlier this week the planning and zoning commission unanimously turned down a request by former Campbell County judge-executive Lloyd Rogers to develop a 77-store outlet mall on the site.

While the project did not completely comply with all of the city's zoning requirements, planners thought that Rogers' project was too large for the 10-acre parcel.

"It was like trying to get 10 pounds in a five-pound sack," Warden said.

Rogers said he is likely to resubmit a scaled-back version of the plan with about 30 stores.

"I see some kind of commercial development on that site," Warden said.

What isn't likely to happen anytime soon are plans for a hotel and conference center near the shopping center.

Greg Land, a principal at CMC Properties, the developer of the shopping center, told planners that the market is not ready for another hotel and conference center, particularly since a similar project is planned just north of Cold Spring at Northern Kentucky University.

CMC did receive approval from planners this week to build a Staples office supply store at the shopping center, which includes Kroger, Kohl's and a Home Depot store under construction.


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