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  • HINDU FESTIVAL—Hundreds of Hindus and friends gather for annual Holi Festival of Colors in Spanish Fork. DANA IVINS
  • RAINBOW CELEBRATION—Holi celebrants joyfully paint themselves at Hindu festival. DANA IVINS
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  • SNOWBOARD TRICKS as hotdoggers show off on the Quad during Entrepreneur Week. CASSIDEE J. CLINE. Story
  • WINTER A and the American flag over a snowy USU campus. WHITNEY PETERSON
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North Logan council OK’s 64-unit townhouse development

February 18th, 2012 Posted in Opinion

By Steve Kent

NORTH LOGAN — A new housing development near North Logan’s planned City Center is one step closer to construction.

The City Council approved the concept plan for a group of townhouses in the Mixed-use General Zone in its meeting Feb. 16. The development covers 5.5 acres at the southeast corner of 2200 North and 400 East. Called “the Cove at North Logan,” it will be built by developers Stan Rowlan and Travis Taylor of North Logan Townhomes. The project includes 64 units, each with three bedrooms and a two-car garage.

The council approved the concept plan by a 4-1 vote, on condition that the developers commission a traffic study, give additional consideration to parking space and install a sidewalk on the south edge of the project.

The concept plan was recommended to the council by the city’s Planning Commission. According to Community Development Director Cordell Batt, the commission reviewed the plan and suggested the sidewalk.

Batt said other staff recommended the project as well. “We feel like this is a good project in this area,” he said.

Councilwoman Nancy Potter said she voted nay because she didn’t think the project fit into the mixed-use zone.

“There should be some other type of component with it,” Potter said. “For me, mixed-use is supposed to be housing, retail or commercial manufacturing, some type of business.

Potter said she’d be more comfortable with the plan in the mixed-use zone if they could build fewer townhomes and add a small area for commercial use.

Batt said ordinances don’t dictate each project within the mixed-use zone have a mixture of uses, rather it reflects the desire of city planners to have a diversity of uses within the zone.

“It’s mixed use in that it’s a use that we don’t have in this general area,” Batt said. “With the smaller projects, it doesn’t make sense to make them do mixed-use within a five acre or smaller piece. The mixed-use (ordinance) doesn’t say anywhere that they have to have a mixture of uses, it says that we would like a mix of use in this area. And it is a use that we don’t have in this area yet.”

The planning commission also suggested waiving the traffic study requirement, Batt said. Some members of the commission felt the city knew enough about traffic use in the area and a 64-unit development wouldn’t impact traffic enough to warrant a study.

Mayor Lloyd Berentzen said he was concerned by the idea of skipping the traffic study. “It seems to me that making sure we have proper traffic flow is almost imperative as the density increases,” Berentzen said.

The council did require the traffic study in their final vote. Morgan, one of the developers of North Logan Townhomes, said requiring it was understandable and they had never asked the council to waive it.

Potter and Councilman Damon Cann said they were concerned that the townhomes would be bought by third parties and rented to students, and three parking spaces per unit would not be enough.

“You’ll have out-of-towners as investors, though, buying them and renting them to students,” Cann said.

Though there are no set standards for parking spaces in a mixed-use zone, the developers exceed the standards set in other zones for parking, Batt said.

NW

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