Grady Ave. developer told: ‘No apartments’
Developers for the proposed mixed residential development on Grady Avenue in Fayetteville were expected to ask the City Council on Oct. 17 to agree to have the potential development return for a full review by the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission. The council agreed, but with the proviso that the new re-worked proposal come with approximately 150 townhomes and cottages and no apartments.
Prior to the meeting, the requested rezoning on the 38-acre property along Grady Avenue had included 276 apartments, 29 townhomes and 43 detached cottages. Property owner Knotty Pine, LLC came to the meeting wanting to have the council agree to let the project return to the Planning and Zoning Commission for a full review that would include revising the scope and scale of the project.
But that is not what transpired at the meeting, said Community Development Director Brian Wismer.
The direction given by the council was to re-work the proposal to include approximately 150 townhomes and detached cottages but not to include apartments in the new request.
The vote on the agenda item to send back to P & Z was 3-1, with councilmen Ed Johnson, Mickey Edwards and Paul Oddo in favor and Councilman Walt White opposed. Commenting on his vote, White said the developer prior to the meeting would not give him a commitment to remove the apartments and return with a re-worked proposal that would include a range of 150-160 other units that would be more appropriate for the location.
The two primary concerns over the proposal expressed last month dealt with the number of apartments and traffic issues along Grady Avenue.
A traffic study performed by Kimley-Horn and presented at the Sept. 19 meeting noted that the developer had agreed to widen Grady Avenue as it approaches Hwy. 54. Council was told there is sufficient right-of-way to add a third lane so that the left and center lanes could turn left because the majority of the traffic flows west onto Hwy. 54.
Another option to help mitigate traffic concerns still in the works would involve purchasing a small section of property to the east that would allow the development to link directly to Hwy. 54 in close proximity to downtown.