For Todd Parrish adding medium density housing is all about the right fit.
“One of the things that we do is look at what the surrounding uses are for the proposals,” the Planning and Zoning Commission vice-chair said. “The only lots that are left are the ugly red-headed stepchild lots.”
The commission recommended one proposal for medium-density homes while developers decided to table two proposed projects on pause after commission members said there were still things that needed to be worked on at the July 17 Planning and Zoning meeting.
For the two tabled items residents and commission members echoed similar sentiments about drainage and higher density lots.
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One plan requested amending the city’s Land Use Plan from low density to medium to add 61 lots on 39.5 acres neighboring the Southridge Lakes subdivision near the corner of FM 1709 and Shady Oak Drive. The plan was previously shown to P&Z with 63 homes, but commission members said the changes are not yet there.
Commission member Shawn McCaskill said the developer is heading in the direction.
“While this is better than previous versions of this plan I’m not prepared to support it at this stage,” he said.
Residents asked the commission not to waiver from the Land Use Plan. The neighboring subdivisions already have medium density lots.
“Is there a reason why we wouldn’t put this same density next to medium density,” Parrish said. “If we were to strictly abide by our master plan there would be no reason for our commission and no reason for City Council.”
Another project called Torian Place, while already planned for medium density near North Kimball Avenue and East Dove Road, faced scrutiny to add 15 lots already surrounded by homes. Residents opposed adding smaller homes that neighbor lots about 2 acres in size and the plan’s lack of green space.
Commission members asked the developer to return with a plan that includes more green space on the 9.2 acres.
For developers like Kosse Maykus, building new residential in the city means working with any remaining bit of undeveloped land.
“This crummy piece of property that nobody’s been happy with, they’ve used it as a dump,” he said about the Torian Place property. “I have systematically bought it up.”
The commission did approve to recommend adding three homes off North Carroll Avenue with a change to the land use plan from low density to medium. While this project does neighbor low density housing, across the street from the proposed homes and directly north are smaller properties.