Residents Oppose Proposed Green Oak Apartment Complex
November 10, 2020
By Mike Kruzman / firstname.lastname@example.org
A potential housing development in Green Oak Township has been met with resistance from would-be neighbors.
Vector Development had originally requested a planned unit development, or PUD, for the The Parc at Green Oak earlier this year, but has since withdrawn that request and is now asking for a straight rezoning. The Parc would be a 20-acre apartment complex on Maltby Road, against the cemetery, a garden center, and residential houses. Early plans are calling for 23 two-story buildings housing 223 units. It would have a clubhouse, pool, dog park, connections to the cemetery, and be in walking distance to the nearby retail center. The parcel is currently zoned Research Office. Vector is requesting it be rezoned Residential Multi-Family.
During the public comment and public hearing portions of last week's meeting, residents spoke out strongly against the development. Jean and Chris Pascoe were the first to bring up concerns of the loss of property value for their homes, with many others reinforcing this fear. Elizabeth and Cameron Sokolowski feel Maltby Road can’t handle the additional traffic. Others were worried about sightlines being obstructed, noise, and the negative effect of having people who live in apartments being in the neighborhood with their “transient” nature. Mike Toomey said that in no way this was a good idea, Don Hokenson said it was a terrible idea, and Eli Sweatland, David Meissner, and William Adam all thought it didn’t fit the area and seemed out of place.
Developer Howard Fingeroot during his presentation said this would be a luxury development that he thought could raise property values, but residents during the hearing doubted that. Clerk and Planning Commission liaison Mike Sedlak said he was uncomfortable with a straight rezoning and wanted to see a committed plan. If the township did rezone the parcel, he didn’t want them taking advantage of that and raising the number of units going in. Sedlak said he preferred a conditional rezoning. Fingeroot said he was alright with that and would submit the current 223-plan as a condition. Planning Commissioners also had concerns about the size of woodlands that would be preserved, and didn’t want trees being put in between buildings to be considered as such. Lary Marshal noted that should it be rezoned, it would eliminate the last of the township’s available Research Office zoning. The property has been zoned RO for 30 years with no development.
At the township planner’s request, the planning commission passed a motion to postpone action on the process until they received more information.