I think Concern's story is worthy of comment, but the land mentioned in the post of "Something's up" is 300-400 yards east of the Tollway on Liberty Grove. I think the land Concern is writing about is west of the tollway and bounded by Toler Road and Larkin Lane. The land in "Something's Up" has no adjacent streets. It is fronted by Liberty Grove only and all interior streets were to be built by the developer. However, the price range and product of both subdivisions were very much the same. The sales prices of homes in both projects averaged $340K-$360K In fact, the engineering firm was exactly the same. I know the engineer and both properties well.
Concern's first comment charges that the proposed development was "low income housing," and it would pull down the value of the existing homes. My goodness.......if minimum pricing for the smaller units are approximately $200K and goes up from there with some homes in the $500K range, I wonder what Concern's definition of "middle income housing" may be. As far as the "small size of the lots and houses," those specs were mandated by the city.......not the developer. I happen to know that the developer's smallest house in their kit bag was 2007 square feet. They were going to have to develop some new plans to meet the city's criteria. The smaller lots and plans were to be specifically designed for seniors that want quality homes, but do not want the large lots and 3,000 sq.ft. to maintain. The Seniors want extremely well done homes without the maintenance. This is what the city wanted and the developer was trying to conform. The "Low cost housing" charge is simply untrue. The land is too expensive for low cost housing. Low cost housing would never recapture the raw land cost. If Concern's comment about the lowering of real estate values because of equal, or higher home prices, landscaped boulevards, parks, and ponds, they need to get in contact with the American Institute of real estate appraisers immediately and give them the proof of the claims. The Institute and the MAI's have been following the wrong appraisal methods for 100 years.
As far as Concern's comments regarding traffic, I can't imagine anyone wanting to drive up that washboard street called Larkin. Also, if someone was trying to get to the proposed subdivision and was on Toler Road, they would be lost. Toler Road does not enter or cross the proposed subdivision. Any traffic problem is grossly overstated. The proposed subdivision had brand new, landscaped boulevards with cascading ponds accessing Liberty Grove and the Tollway. Why would new residents want to use either Toler or Larkin? It wouldn't be exactly "slumming" but it wouldn't be as nice.
When anyone purchased a home along the north side of Toler Road, they would have a backyard view of a horse pasture. It would be a nice, bucolic scene. However, that land was not owned by the homeowner. It was owned by someone else. I feel certain that no one ever promised that the land would remain undeveloped until the end of time. If so, someone lied. Therefore, some risk is taken whenever buying a home next to undeveloped property. One is never certain what ultimately would be built on the horse pasture. However, a city can control the development with zoning ordinances. Not only does Concern have an interest in what is to be developed, the city also wants good property. Typically, the city wants to preserve values, enhance the tax base, and elevate the image of the town and neighborhood. In this case, the current zoning was for Mixed Use. The applicant requested zoning be changed to a suitable residential zoning. The proposal and the prominent developer was thrown on the trash heap. It is going to cost the city a lot of revenue.
I have some more to say on this topic, but baby needs a new pair of shoes. There will be more on another post.