Hinesburg Road PUD presented to DRB

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Thursday January 26, 2012

59 Housing Units / 20,000 sq. ft. Commercial

An Essex development company presented an overview of a project to South Burlington’s Development Review Board last week, explaining the plan in its earliest stages, while seeking comment from panel members about what they want included in further schemes.

Rye Associates appeared before the Board for sketch plan review. The project, slated to be built at 1075 Hinesburg Road, is a planned-unit development consisting of 27 single-family dwellings; 32 multi-family units in seven buildings, and 20,000 sf of commercial space in four buildings.

Board members peppered the applicants with questions about a wetlands patch that is located within the project, plans for a park, housing designs, transfer development rights (TDRs) as well as overnight parking and traffic impacts.  South Burlington Associate Planner Cathyann LaRose explained how TDRs kicked in and what role they would likely play in the plan.

Board Chairman Mark Behr focused on the need for a park in the project and housing designs, noting the need for green space in the plan. “We want to see a place where kids can have a football game in the field. I live in the neighborhood next to (this proposed project), and I think a park would be very welcome.”

Rye Associates indicated they would construct a park in the development.

Borrowing a page from a Planning Commission meeting held earlier this month—during their meeting, Planning Commissioners had discussed the need for more affordable housing in the city—Board member William Stuono asked project developers if they considered an array of prices and design schemes for the housing units.

One of the project representatives, Brad Dousevicz of Dousevicz Inc., a development, real estate, and construction firm located in South Burlington, welcomed the suggestion, saying, “The more variety we can offer, the better.”

Noting that the project’s design is based on Village Haven in Essex Junction, Dousevicz said few projects offer a “place where residents can age in place.”  Developers also plan on avoiding the so-called “development, cookie cutter look” and plan not to exceed 28 feet in building height. Additionally, overnight parking, used as a guest feature, is also planned.

“I think you’re going in the right direction,” said Behr.

The Development Review Board will examine the project again during its March 6 meeting.

SOURCE: Gail Callahan, Correspondent