I am told the "warehouse" is not intended to look like the traditional warehouse. I am told the building is to contain offices and have masonry coverage. As explained to me, the building would not be offensive.
Well, it takes more than masonry coverage and offices to make a building compatible with a residential neighborhood. You can put brick or stone on a square box and flat roof, and it still looks like a warehouse. It takes more than that.
The test is simple. If the building is aesthetically pleasing, and it does not contribute any other adverse condition to the neighborhood, there is no harm to surrounding real estate values. The rub comes with the opinions of different people. All people don't see things the same way. One person's beautiful building is another's eyesore. I can't referee that.
Generally, I would say that the more the proposed building looks like a suburban office building, the better the fit. I would beef up the landscaping and stay away from a flat roof. A mansard roof might help, if flat roof is absolutely needed. Also, a parapet wall, creatively applied, might help. Much depends on the size of the building.
It's my understanding a meeting is to be held in which the properties of the building will be discussed. My advice is to go to the meeting and ask questions. Ask for architect's renderings. Learn all the physical features of the building. Also, inquire into traffic loads and hours of operation.
In such cases, I like to use an old college trick. (It isn't used anymore.) I was taught to think for myself. I'm not much into talking over the backyard fence.
As I wrote in the earlier blog post, two well intentioned charity organizations are advocating the location of a building that serves some excellent community needs. Surrounding homeowners are resisting because they don't know what's coming, but are highly resistant to any "warehouse" look of the structure. Therefore, some compromise is in order, if the building is to ever be built.
What is the current zoning? What does Rowlett 2020 say? Was this one land parcel designated as "industrial" or "Office?" The land is being spun out of a church zoning. Is other land going to be spun out? How many "warehouse" sites can be developed from this property? Is this a single purpose dropped right in the middle of residential? Why? Does the compassionate mission of Life Messages compensate for any adverse effect on home values that may arise?
Be alert to any emotional rationale, rather than economic logic. This is an exercise in economics, not compassion. If a charitable mission is the subject, this conversation in logic is over. Make the building look like a suburban neighborhood office building and probably everything works.
All are legitimate questions.