Lynne Hermansen
Special to The Gardner News
Three Committee recommendations were passed at April 19 Gardner City Council meeting.
Two of the items were for reclassifications of rezoning districts for the Aspen Creek Subdivision.
The first section rezones .12 acres from R2 to R-1 at 185th Street. The second section rezones 15.59 acres at 186th street and Gardner Road from R-2 to RP-4.
Bob Case, principal planner, said the new housing will provide 122 new homes with 56 homes as single family detached units.
cott Garrie , resident, said he had sent city council a lot of emails and had a lot of questions. “How it happened wasn’t transparent in the beginning,” he said. “There was a lot of confusion and contradictory info.”
Garrie said they didn’t know how to protest zoning, what city codes to look at for reference and why R-4 zoning designation was needed.
“Traffic is already not fun on this side of town-there is a lot of traffic there,” he said. Garrie said his main concern was that the designated park land space wasn’t a public park, but the code uses it as a buffer space.
“We really need to find a way to get park space at 183rd Street,” he said. “The only place the kids can congregate is the pool.”
Garrie said he wasn’t against development but wanted the city to be more transparent.
Judd Claussen, Phelps Engineering principal, said the R-4 designation was to fit the city’s duplex requirements but apartments weren’t going into the Aspen Creek development.
David Knopick, community development director, said the RP4 designation was critical.
Kacy Deaton, council member, said she had concerns why it was designated for just duplexes.
Knopick said it had to be designated that way for duplexes under 10,000 square feet, and the designation limits to duplexes.
“We have had 20 to 25 deviations in the past, and it becomes difficult to enforce,” he said. “This makes it easier to implement and regulate during construction.”
Randy Gregoryck, council member, said he supported the project because there is a need from the community for housing, however, he had questions and concerns about drainage, traffic safety and making sure the duplexes stay duplexes.
Gregoryck said he wanted to know how the drainage matches up with the nearby Plaza South church drainage.
Claussen said the church has their own drainage retention that drains south and south east across I-35.
Gregoryck said the outlet was right at the threshold of the park entrance.
Claussen said it was east of the walking path, and they also do not intend to take down any trees.
Gregoryck said he wanted to know if the park land was an addition to the buffer area code.
Knopick said there was confusion in the park designation land city codes.
“There is a difference between park and public park,” he said. “This will not be a public park but open space area the HOA is responsible for maintaining.”
Knopick said the code language was a typology confusion and would need to be cleaned up. “We should be sensitive about how we throw around park,” he said.
Gregorcyk said he also had concerns about the power lines over the open space land area and trails.
Claussen cited examples from Lenexa with the same land area plans and that an encroachment agreement would be needed in order to change the plan.
Knopick said approval from the utility company would be needed, and the HOA would have to encroach the city for charges and determine if it was significant enough.
Gregoryck said he wanted clarity if it was low income tax credit housing.
Claussen said the homes were market rate being in a HOA development averaging from $1,600 to $1,800 a month.
Gregoryck said he wanted to know if the homes would also have to pay HOA dues on top of the monthly rent.
Knopick said that hadn’t been figured out yet.
Claussen said the development most likely would cover the HOA dues indirectly to the renter.
Tory Roberts, council member, said she had concerns about the signage and postings and wanted to make sure people are notified correctly.
Knopick said there had been confusion on the website with older codes listed, and they should refer to the Title 17 municipal code pages.
Steve Shute, mayor, said he would like to see the inconsistencies on the website cleaned up.
Gregoryck said he wanted to know how does he trust and verify the right signage. “I only found one sign,” he said.
Knopick said signs should have been on property and close to the properties.
Shute said this was his neighborhood and there were already duplexes in that area.
“The terms and consistency are adjacent with consistent market rate,” he said.

In other business:
City council also approved a contract with Haynes Equipment for replacing the Kill Creek Water Resource Recovery Facility UV Disinfection and Recycled Water Systems for $317,580.
Gonz Garcia, utility director, said the facility was twenty years old, and there was an immediate need as the current system is obsolete.
Todd Winters, council president, said it had been a problem for awhile.