Somers board approval paves way for senior apartments, townhomes near Carthage
SOMERS

Somers board approval paves way for senior apartments, townhomes near Carthage

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SOMERS — A $10.1 million development that includes senior housing apartments and townhomes is expected to break ground next month on the site of what was once the Parkview Tavern in the village.

The Village Board on Nov. 26 approved land use and zoning changes for the Carthage View development, which has an 80-unit, a four-story Parkview Apartments designed for older adults and 16, three-bedroom unit townhomes.

The two buildings, about 22,000- and 11,000-square-feet, respectively, would occupy about half of an 8.12-acre site on a bluff in the 2100 block of Sheridan Road, overlooking Carthage College.

Offered by Bear Development, monthly rents for the units would range from $500-$1,150 with amenities, such as a fitness center, community room and detached garages.

According to S.R. Mills, Bear president, said the apartment development is similar to that of Eva Manor in Pleasant Prairie, an independent living community designed for adults 55 and older. The development is intended to accommodate the growing need for senior housing in the area.

The board approved the comprehensive plan for the site that changes the land from medium residential to a high residential use in a primary environmental corridor. It also approved a corresponding zoning change from the previous community business district to multi-family residential district in a lowland conservancy area.

The approvals pave the way for the developer to break ground as early as the second week of December. Mills said he expects the project to be completed by late September or early October next year.

Village President George Stoner, prior to the board’s deliberation, said the plans would be subject to a development agreement that include up to $250,000 reduction in impact fees to the developer, with Bear agreeing to a return on investment analysis to determine whether any of the reduced fees could be recaptured by the village. The agreement would be subject final compliance with county zoning and development officials, he said.

Trustee David Geertsen thanked Mills for bringing the development to the former tavern site.

“This will be another great development and help improve that area in the village,” he said.

“We’re very excited bringing this forward. We’ve had a lot of meetings on it,” said Stoner.

Unique infrastructure

Village Trustee Gregg Sinnen said the property is also subject to a “unique agreement” in that Carthage View would have water service as a customer of the city and not the village. Initially, Sinnen was wary of the logistics, but “in looking at the numbers and at the layout that’s just the smartest way to do it.”

He noted that the agreement doesn’t just give the developer a reduction in fees.

“I think there are $687,000 in fees and we’re replacing a $430,000 water line,” said Mills.

Sinnen added that the village is a “significant” amount in fees from the developer.

“I just don’t want people to think $250,000 less and we’re giving away the farm,” he said. “I believe that this is a good deal for everyone and hopefully they turn out as nice as the other (senior and apartment) developments.”

Assistant Village Administrator Jason Peters said among the benefits of the project is that it is not in a tax incremental finance district. Eva Manor, according to Mills, had originally been in a TIF district.

Once it is built and assessed, “all of this value will come on right away, which the village desperately needs,” he said.

The development is projected to generate an assessment of about $5.5 million when fully operational.

Currently, the property is vacant with dilapidated buildings, including the former tavern, razed three years ago.

“You’re really creating — what’s an eyesore today — hopefully, what will be a catalyst for some other development there, as well,” said Trustee Karl Ostby.

“We’re excited about the product, too,” said Mills, who noted that Bear has opened two senior residential developments in the last 45 days, both which have 100 percent occupancy. “I don’t see that dissipating, either. It’s that supply and demand we’re conscious of that, too.”

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