Commission satisfied with project's changes

A parcel that is south of the current Oaks development shown above has been slated for an additional 54 housing units. The emphasis at the development will be a maintenance-free lifestyle. 

A proposal to add more housing to the Courtyards at the Oaks community has been approved by the Derby Planning Commission. It needs final authorization by the City Council, but unless there is major opposition by citizens, such approval is usually granted.

In this case, not only was there no neighborhood objection, three residents showed up to the Commission’s June 6 meeting to voice their support.

The community is west of Triple Creek Road, south of Tall Tree Road and north of Meadowlark Blvd. It is adjacent to the Derby Golf and Country Club.

At the meeting, the commission handled two pieces of business related to the project: final approval of the Residential Planned Unit Development and final approval of the plat of the land, formally known as the Courtyards at the Oaks 2nd Addition.

The initial plans were introduced at the Feb. 21 DPC meeting and there were several concerns.

They included:

  • the need to include open green space and amenities into the proposed development.
  • the ability of the clubhouse to accommodate a larger community.
  • how the inclusion of the additional lots and future residents would impact the amenities and facilities in the existing Courtyards development.
  • the financial impact to the Oaks Master HOA of inclusion of lots into the Courtyards HOA rather than the Oaks Master HOA.

Citizens who spoke at the recent meeting say they were pleased with the way the developers were forthright in visiting with them and creating a clear line of communication, including holding a series of meetings with them.

“It’s a matter of letting them know what’s happening,” said agent Brian Lindebak of MKEC Engineering. Another involved entity is the builder, Perfection Builders.

The changes include reducing the number of lots by one, from 55 to 54, to create a reserve, and adding a neighborhood swimming pool and pavilion. Residents would use the existing clubhouse, but there are plans for future renovations to make it more useful, Lindebak said.

In his report to the Commission, City Planner Justin Givens said the way the concerns were addressed and changes made justify going ahead with the new housing.

“The developer has platted into reserves more open space, including the large overhead power easement, and removed one lot to expand the area that will house the pool and pavilion,” he reported. “Staff feels that this dedication is adequate and meets the desires of the Planning Commission and residents to provide for additional green space and amenities within the new development.”

Lindebak said the 15-acre addition would be a positive one for the city as it would add more residents and growth but use less land.

That area had been planned for 26 single-family homes, but the new concept calls for the 54 units, which are much closer to each other.

The maintenance-free housing will range from 1,200 to 3,000 square feet and be priced up to $350,000.

Work will begin “as soon as possible,” he said after final approvals. He is hopeful the first residents can move in by next spring and the entire project be done in two to three years.

There are 87 units in the existing area and they have sold well. About 16 remain for sale, Lindebak said.

Scott Lehner, co-owner of Perfection Builders, said the addition will look like part of “one community,” but the overall flow will be different because of the lay of the land.

Like the first addition, there won’t be any age restrictions, but given the nature of the housing style, which is called zero lot line patio homes, they do tend to attract older adults and empty nesters, developers say.