The Edmond Planning Commission rejected a rezoning request Tuesday made by the Covell & Kelly Group LLC for a second phase to the upscale 1201 Apartments. Formerly known as the Enclave Apartments, the 1201 Apartments remain under construction after a fire destroyed the first construction attempt in 2009.
Commissioners voted 1-4 against rezoning from open display commercial and high density multiple-family planned unit development to multiple-family. This action applies to property located east and north of Covell Village Drive.
Neither did commissioners agree to amend the Edmond Plan from open display commercial to multiple family. Commissioner Kenneth Wohl voted yes on both items.
“The entire multi-family project will now consist of 317 units on 20.29 acres,” said Bob Schiermeyer, city planner. “At 16 units per acre, it is not appropriate to have 176 units on 9.83 acres unless the apartment development is on the total 20.29 acres, adding the original Enclave Apartments — now called 1201 Apartments — to the proposed new phase of 176 units.”
There would be an access drive south of Uptown Market and possibly from the Lowe’s Home Improvement driveway near Kelly and Covell, Schiermeyer said. A lake between the apartments would prohibit common access between the sets of apartments.
In representing the Covell & Kelly Group, Clay Coldiron said the Covell & Kelly Group over-stated the marketing potential of the site when it created the master plan.
“We now believe, based upon the pace of development in this area that the (high density multi-family) zoning is a better use,” Coldiron. “We see it as a buffer use to the D2 general commercial and the residential.”
Ten residents spoke against the project. They said adding more apartments will increase traffic on Covell Village Drive. The safety of school children walking to school would be impaired, they said. A transportation study will be required if the item returns for site plan approval.
Commissioner Rob Rainey said there are only about 50 commercial properties available in northwest Edmond.
“As a commissioner, when I hear all the concerns raised by abutting land owners, I have questions and concerns about that,” Rainey said.
Access to Covell Village drive would be indirect, rather than direct, Coldiron said. A Community Connections meeting facilitated by the Planning Department took place in March between the local residents and the Covell & Kelly Group, Coldiron said.
“We really like the fact that… what we’re trying to do here is basically a down zoning,” Coldiron said.
Additional apartments could decrease their property values, the homeowners said. Coldiron said residential properties nearby the 1201 Apartments continue to increase during its construction.
“We’ve laid out the site and we’ve created 200 feet of separation from the multi-family structure to the property line of the nearest resident,” Coldiron said.
Certified appraiser Jim McDaniel, of Redlands Drive in the neighboring housing addition, said the proposed apartments’ location directly impacts the value of his property.
“It’s a given fact that apartments located next to apartment complexes like this lose value,” he said. “I purchased my house about a year ago. And if I had any idea there was going to be another apartment complex in there, I wouldn’t have bought it.”
One of the residents complained that he removed trash from the pond, including metal siding and flashing.
“I’m not buying this notion of down zoning,” said Barry Moore, commission chairman. “That may be what the book says, but I don’t think the good people that bought homes out there think this is any kind of down zoning.”
The City Council will consider the item April 28.
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