37 con­dos pro­posed

Val­ley Road eyed for se­nior hous­ing

Newark Post - - Front Page - By KARIE SIM­MONS ksim­mons@ches­pub.com

The plan­ning com­mis­sion has OK’d lo­cal builder Dan Kan­dra’s plan to build 37 new con­do­mini­ums across the street from the ex­ist­ing Bri­ar­creek de­vel­op­ment off Val­ley Road.

The project now goes to city coun­cil for con­sid­er­a­tion.

The new neigh­bor­hood will be known as Bri­ar­creek North and is slated to be built on 16.4 acres of land cur­rently in un­in­cor­po­rated New Cas­tle County.

On Tues­day night, Alan Hill of Hill­crest As­so­ci­ates, a Penn­syl­va­nia-based ar­chi­tec­ture and en­gi­neer­ing firm, pre­sented the project to the plan­ning com­mis­sion on be­half of the Kan­dra Group. He said Kan­dra wants the land an­nexed into the city of Newark and re­zoned to RS (sin­gle-fam­ily de­tached res­i­den­tial).

The 37 homes will be built in groups of three and four in the same style of Bri­ar­creek. Buy­ers must be 55 or older, and no more than two un­re­lated ten­ants are al­lowed per unit, just like in Bri­ar­creek.

Rick Longo, owner of Hill­crest As­so­ci­ates, said a va­ri­ety of materials will be used on the fa­cade of each home that will carry around the en­tire unit.

“There’s no bad views in this com­mu­nity,” Longo said.

Sev­eral Bri­ar­creek resi- dents spoke in fa­vor of the project on Tues­day and praised the qual­ity of Kan­dra’s con­struc­tion as well as his ded­i­ca­tion as a builder.

Beth McFarland said her home in Bri­ar­creek will look right onto the new de­vel­op­ment.

“I am thrilled Dan will be the builder be­cause I know what I’m go­ing to see. I know I’m go­ing to see qual­ity homes and the very best,” she said. “In short, I just trust him.”

Diane Thomas thinks Newark needs more com­mu­ni­ties for older res­i­dents. She said peo­ple of­ten drive through her neigh­bor­hood and ask if any homes are go­ing up for sale.

“There was so much de­mand for these homes [when they were built] that we actu- ally had a bid­ding war,” she said.

Other peo­ple at the meet­ing, how­ever, weren’t as con­vinced.

Jean White, who doesn’t live near the pro­posed de­vel­op­ment, thought Bri­ar­creek North was too dense and sug­gested Kan­dra elim­i­nate a few units.

Kevin McCul­lough, who lives be­hind the pro­posed site, said if each of the 37 homes has two cars, that could mean 74 ve­hi­cles trav­el­ing in and out of the neigh­bor­hood.

“I don’t think we need that traf­fic on Val­ley Road ev­ery day,” he said.

He added that he has sev­eral ma­ture trees on his prop­erty that he hopes will not be af­fected dur­ing con­struc­tion. Be­sides that, he said he doesn’t think it’s a good place to build.

“There’s a rea­son why it hasn’t sold in so long,” McCul­lough said. “It’s just a wet area.”

The plan­ning com­mis­sion unan­i­mously voted in fa­vor of the an­nex­a­tion and re­zon­ing, and nar­rowly ap­proved the project as a whole, 3 to 2. Com­mis­sion­ers Wil­lard Hurd and Jeremy Fire­stone were the op­pos­ing votes.

Bri­ar­creek North now moves to coun­cil with a pos­i­tive rec­om­men­da­tion. A date for the vote has not been an­nounced.

The plan is one of two Kan­dra Group projects due to be con­sid­ered by coun­cil. The first, a con­tro­ver­sial pro­posal for 14 rental town­houses on Barks­dale Road, is sched­uled for a vote Aug. 22.

An artist’s ren­der­ing shows homes planned for Bri­ar­creek North off Val­ley Road.

NEWARK POST GRAPIC BY JOSH SHAN­NON

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