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ROGERS -- The City Council approved rezoning two properties drawing public outcry in many city meetings.

It was the second time the council considered the rezoning for Pinnacle Lofts, an apartment complex planned for 20 acres on the north side of Stoney Brook Road. The council remanded the decision to the Planning Commission the last time.

Other action

Rogers’ City Council met Tuesday and approved:

• Closing streets on Nov. 23 for the annual NWA Turkey Trot hosted by Sheep Dog Impact Assistance.

• Spending $850,000 from general reserve for the final phase of the Rogers Historical Museum expansion.

• Amending the 2017 budget for Community Development Block Grant to move $139,445. Administrator Donna Johnson said the money was set aside for building sidewalks. Johnson said they often set aside CDBG money for goals that would take a few years of savings, but HUD policy recently changed and required the money be spent within two years. The money will go into other purposes, such as transportation assistance, she said.

• Accepting a $421,205 Community Development Block Grant.

• Rezoning 20 acres at 501 N. 40th Street, commonly known as belonging to the Elks Lodge, from agricultural to residential office.

• Buying snow removal equipment for the airport and Street Department.

Source: Staff report

Aldermen said they approved it this time because the developer listened to feedback and acted accordingly.

Attorney Bill Watkins, who represented the project Tuesday night, said sight lines from the apartment complexes to neighboring homes were adjusted to account for more privacy and some building heights were shortened. Amenities and amount of green space also were made top priorities, he said. Key changes created better buffering, such as flipping one building and placing a parking lot between it and the next neighboring home. Another building had an entire floor removed.

"They've done a lot to make it workable, I think we should support it," Alderman Mark Kruger said.

Alderman Jerry Carmichael said he attended all three Planning Commission meetings and a committee meeting that spent ample time reviewing the amenities and calculating green space. Carmichael commended the client's choice in flipping the building closest to the property line.

Community Development Director John McCurdy said the project caused the department to rethink how it calculates amenities.

"It was good for us," McCurdy said. Working with Planning Commission chairman Don Spann, he set up a density committee for those discussions. "I think we've learned a lot about where the code needs to go, in terms of green space and amenities. In the past, look at how much permeable ground and say you owe us this much green space, think we did a much better job" this way.

A portion of the 188-acres formerly known as the Mills Family Farm, which is at the southwest corner of Interstate 49 and Pleasant Grove Road, was rezoned from highway commercial to commercial with open display. The approximately 33 acres is intended to ultimately be a used car dealership, said attorney Bill Watkins, who represented the request by GFB Investments LLC.

NW News on 11/15/2017

Print Headline: Council OKs rezoning for apartment complex

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