Danville Express

Newsfront - February 9, 2007

Danville OKs housing plans on Fostoria Way

Zoning change opens way for apartments

by Geoff Gillette

With little debate and less fanfare the members of the Danville Town Council gave their approval to a rezoning request that will further diminish the available commercial space in town and add housing.

At their Tuesday night meeting, council members continued the public hearing over a request by Blacksmith Homes to rezone the 1.76-acre property at Fostoria Way and the Iron Horse Trail from Light Industrial to Planned Unit Development. Initial plans call for the construction of a 34-unit apartment building, with a long-range plan of selling them as condo units.

When the issue was first brought up at the Jan. 16 meeting, council members were ready to give it their approval but held off due to questions from adjacent property owners in regards to a loss of parking spaces from an Emergency Vehicle Access easement.

Senior Planner Jill Bergman told the council Tuesday that in the intervening weeks, representatives of Blacksmith Homes had met with both the town and the property owners to go over lot lines and easement agreements. Bergman said both sides had come to an arrangement that would allow for the easement.

Council members had few comments about the plan. When a vote was taken a few moments later, the request was approved 4-1 with the sole nay vote coming from Mayor Mike Shimansky.

"This is the last piece of commercial property we have in Danville that's not being built on," Shimansky said.

"One of the things we're short on in Danville is commercial property," he added. "I don't believe in turning our last commercial units into residential when we already have an abundance of residential property."

The plans for the 34 apartments call for them to be built in four separate buildings. Each unit will have a one- or two-car garage.

Plans also call for a common area courtyard to be used by all the occupants. A tot lot and a barbecue area are also being proposed.

The Town of Danville and the Design Review Board worked with the project applicant and architect to create a development that will be complimentary with the surroundings on Fosteria Way and the Iron Horse Trail. The apartment buildings will include a combination of wood siding and stucco with composition shingle or tile roofing. There will also be some type of masonry element.

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