Colleyville City Council votes on two major developments

Posted Monday, Jun. 24, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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Covenant Christian Academy has received the first-step of approval from the city to begin expanding the private school’s campus.

The Colleyville City Council approved the zoning change request during last week’s meeting.

The academy will return with detailed plans for the construction of a new baseball field, underground parking facility and football field projects, including lighting plans and an updated traffic study, at a future date.

Keith Castello, Covenant’s headmaster, said the academy uses capitol campaigns for development funding and hopes to begin fundraising in November with goals of raising $6 million for the first phase of construction. Castello said he hopes the project will be completed by 2032.

“The first thing we want to do is expand academic space up on the north end of campus,” he said. “The second priority is the parking structure with the baseball field on top of it.”

Castello estimates the 400-space parking lot under a 450-seat baseball field project to be completed by 2022.

Some neighbors opposed the expansion, voicing concerns over noise and light pollution coming from the games played at the school, which sits on the border of Colleyville and Bedford. Currently, Covenant plays baseball and football “home” games at other facilities.

“The lights are a very big deal for me,” Bedford resident Gary Zak said. “We need more details on these new designs.”

Brenda Huckins, Colleyville resident and CCA parent, said her family is one of 140 CCA families that live in Colleyville.

“We moved to Colleyville back in 1990 — things were a lot different — simply and solely because of Covenant Christian Academy,” Huckins said.

Mayor David Kelly did not participate in the discussion or vote because he lives in close proximity of the academy. Councilwoman Carol Wollin was absent from the night’s discussion and vote.

The Overlook at Bear Creek

The city may soon see more houses along Pleasant Run Road and Big Bear Creek.

City Council approved a zoning change for Dallas-based developers Wilbow Corp. to build The Overlook at Big Bear Creek neighborhood.

The 53-acre area, which neighbors Monticello and an Atlas Co. gas well site, will feature about 70 homes on lot sizes that average 16,000 square feet.

The public discussion on the development lasted more than an hour.

“I know not everyone got what they wanted, but I think it was a good give and take and compromises very well,” Mayor Kelly said. “Monticello has a beautiful neighborhood and this will be a very beautiful neighborhood too.”

Homeowners in the neighboring Monticello shared concerns about fencing, having an emergency access road and obtaining full potential of their mineral rights.

“We do want to continue to receive royalties for as much, and as long, as we can,” said Lanese Turner, Colleyville resident.

The council said future homeowners will maintain trees on their property to act as a buffer between the neighborhoods. Council members also agreed to keep Harrison Lane a public road.

Councilman Stan Hall said he envisions only residents using the street.

“I am personally in favor of making it a connector street so both of these developments can enjoy the connectivity,” he said.

Councilwoman Carol Wollin was the lone dissenter to the ordinance. Councilman Jodi Short, who lives within close proximity to the development, abstained from the discussion.

Wollin wanted assurance that the current neighbors of the gas well site would continue to obtain all of their royalties.

“We cannot put something into place that stops the current home owners from achieving all the royalties that they can from a site,” she said.

She also wanted the proposed homes abutting Monticello to be more similar to the homes’ 15,000-square-foot minimum lot size.

Wilbow president Chas Fitzgerald said the development will be a great addition to the city.

“In the end, our original vision was kept in tact,” Fitzgerald said.

Twitter: @dustindangli

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