Bellevue holds public hearing on development proposal
By Rich Palzewic
BELLEVUE – The Bellevue village board held a public hearing at its Oct. 28 meeting to consider a planned development district (PDD) on behalf of Jeff Marlow, Lexington Homes Inc.
The 34.12-acre area would include 208 units of multi-family apartments and intensive business uses located generally south of Main Street (U.S. Highway 141) and east of Glenmore Road.
Andrew Vissers, director of community development, gave the board an update on the history of the property and discussed the process the village goes through with PDDs.
“This property was annexed into the Village of Bellevue from Ledgeview in 2007,” said Vissers. “In 2008, it was zoned to B-3 (intensive business). We have a two-step process when we consider a PPD in the village. First, we have the vision step – does the village buy into what is being put forward? Secondly, the final proposal adds more details to be considered. You look at the big picture first, and then act later on specific items within the proposal.”
Vissers said there is a single refuse/recycling site being proposed for the project.
“The refuse site is on one end of the property, so we’d ask that be more centrally located or another one be provided on the other end of the property,” he said. “We’d also recommend a berm be placed along the buildings on Glenmore Road. A maintenance building would also be on site.”
After Vissers’ discussion, 14 village residents spoke to the board on the matter, all against the PDD.
The most common reasons residents were against the PDD were increased vehicle and foot traffic, safety and decreased property values for existing homes.
“We only found out about this recently,” said resident Mike Shepeck. “There wasn’t lots of time to sit down with people and discuss things. I wouldn’t want to see apartment-style housing here – single-family and businesses are fine. These apartments don’t seem to fit the area. There will also be more noise and crime, too. Adding another 300 cars would add to the traffic problem and flow. We don’t need more apartment buildings in Bellevue.”
Vissers said any development in the village with more than 200 units needs at least two points of access for traffic.
“The Huron Grove development has slightly fewer than 200 units and only has one access onto Huron Road,” he said. “I understand that development might be different than this one, but we haven’t had any complaints about Huron Grove. We typically like more than one access, though.”
Vissers also addressed the village’s policy for notification of public hearings.
“We’re required to send a notification to anyone directly adjacent to the proposed area,” he said. “It was also on our website, was published in the newspaper twice and posted at the village offices.”
The development would bring in an estimated $22 million in tax revenue, and the village wouldn’t have to add additional infrastructure.
After the public hearing, the board discussed the concerns and voted unanimously to postpone the item to the next village board meeting Dec. 1.
Board President Steve Soukup said waiting for a few weeks would give the developer more time to work on plans and for people to gather more information.
“We listen to our citizens and value their opinion,” Soukup said. “I’m not sure it’s possible, but I’d like to see this area be more like the Willow Glen subdivision. The homes are condos and closer together.”