P&Z considers new mixed-use PD,

July 02, 2020 Forney P&Z considered a PD rezoning, ATV request, Farmer's Market Permit and amending Overland Grove.
During its regular July 02, 2020 meeting, the Forney Planning & Zoning Commission met to consider a PD rezoning, ATV request, Farmer's Market Permit and amending Overland Grove.
(watch official video)

  • Held Public Hearings -
    • Denied, without prejudice, a request to rezone 53.94 acres from Light Industrial district to a mixed use Planned Development district with multi-family, office and general retail uses. The property is located east of North F.M. 548, south of Don T. Cates Drive and is identified by the Kaufman County Appraisal District as property id's 7769 and 7770.
          Mr. Morgan said this is between AMC and Steve Silver.  Proposing 720 MF units on East, office + retail on side near 548. 
      1. Section Office 1: 2.7 acres, 23k sq ft
      2. Office 2 is 8.7 acres, 88k sq ft
      3. N Central retail: 4.3 acres, 25k retail + 7.5k restaurant
      4. Retail West is 4.4 acres, 27.6k retail, 6.4k restaurant.

          PD has phasing: 1: 40k retail/office (which must be built before phase 2); Ph. 2: 360 MF units; Ph. 3: 80k retail/office (which must be built before ph. 4); Ph. 4: remaining 360 MF units; 5: more office/retail.  Includes eastern extension of Ridgecrest.  Traffic study hasn't been done, is required before driveway permits or development.  TxDOT will require it for access to FM 548.  Forney has had recent MF growth with Emerson and Gateway.  Council has verbally indicated more MF may not be desired.
          Rep. Mr. Jon Kendall spoke and said owner wants to sell all 54 acres, so to make this a viable project had to look at a different angle.  Land use map recommends town-homes.  They had two developers look at it and hit roadblocks.  It makes no sense to have town-homes in front, should be commercial there.  Developers had concerns about having roads to the area, will cost about 7.5 million.  Concerns about looking out the windows at truck traffic and back of Walmart and detention pond.  Makes more sense to have MF, which would help the retail section, which has been impacted by covid situation.  Applicant was excited about this pre-covid, still excited.  Re: too much MF: this is not something can build overnight.  First door would open in 2 years, then committed to 80k retail, total is 8 years out.
          Mr. Traylor asked about average unit size: about 880.  They had several MF developers look at it.  Rental rate? Market rate, 1.52/ft.  Mr. Helm asked about MF folks having same concerns about view as town-homes - the difference is MF are rentals, vs a $500k town-home being purchased.  Mr. Bingham asked about the phasing, if there would be amenities - yes, must compete for rentals, will put trails through the existing trees, possibly to Walmart and AMC.  Chair. Shimkus asked about office area, if it could be retail - could be hospital, daycare, bank.  The initial 120k sq. ft. guarantees 50k retail.  Mr. Morgan confirmed 50k sq ft would be retail, non-office.  Chair. Shimkus asked if any interest in the retail area - Mr. Kendall said they must build something to attract renters, talking to 3 breweries, restaurants, could have law office, insurance, dentist.
          Mr. Traylor asked to revisit town-homes - Mr. Morgan said the applicant feels town-homes difficult, just proposing 720 MF.  Chair. Shimkus said this is landlocked in between two non-prime areas.  Mr. Helm said it is rather trapped, the view is part of the deal for renting.  He asked if reason for MF was because need to fill the land beyond just retail, could it all be retail.  Mr. Kendall said they went through the options.  Everyone is open to talk with frontage, but at 2nd or 3rd tier, interest drops drastically.  Would a bank or restaurant want to be behind trees? Town-homes there would be very expensive, would have to extend Ridgecrest and build a bridge. 
          Mr. Bingham asked if they have done a development like this unique situation, with MF and retail with Walmart and Kroger arguably within walking distance.  The developer is building Ridgecrest road, the city will have to pick up development past this project.  They would be building retail and work within walking distance.  Mr. Kendall said some similar, but each project is unique.  Most people would consider it crazy to commit to 40k sq. ft. up front, without rooftops.  They believe can sell it (Silver Crossing). 
          Mr. Chambers asked about the TxDOT traffic study for 720 units - Mr. Kendall said the study will consider that the last 360 are 6 years out, impact some time off.  Will need the study to be sure it's feasible.  They hope some of the residents will do more walking and not have to travel so much.  Mr. Chambers said 720 is a lot of units for a small area.  Mr. Helm said also cars going to the retail; he asked what could happen with the study, could it stop the project? Mr. Morgan asked Mr. Zook who said they would wait for the TxDOT traffic study to show the full build-out.  FM 548 scheduled to widen in 3+ years, currently chokes down to 2 lanes.  TxDOT will improve the signals and add medians (with the widening).
          Mr. Bingham asked about Ridgecrest extension - Mr. Kendall said starts in phase 1a, must have 2 access points before build MF.  Hope for help from EDC, will be 12-15 million before add MF.  Mr. Bingham asked Mr. Morgan how long would the city take to complete Ridgecrest to 80; Mr. Morgan said Cap. Improvement Committee will consider road impact fees later in years, would add that as a project, probably 5-10 yrs. 
          Ms. Holler asked if the road would be extended either way? She doesn't feel apartments nestled in back is best, but office space could be there as frontage isn't as important.  She wondered why the road is an issue for just town-homes.  The number of apartments is concerning.  She would prefer to see the TIA before they decide. 
          Mr. Morgan said any extension of the road beyond this development would require funding, which city doesn't have.  Mr. Kendall said they would pay for the road and dedicate it; about office behind the tree line, the front 24 acres can contain 180k which is substantial.  For restaurants, banks, they want rooftops close by.  Chair. Shimkus said Gateway is only 1 mile away.  Mr. Kendall said that's true, but retail space exists with for-lease signs now, more rooftops would help.  They have asked the FEDC if would help with $1 mill for the road, answer has been no so far, they will still pay 7.5 million.
          Mr. Bingham asked if they are asking for any other incentives - no, funding 100%.  The TIA will have to be done before they move forward.  Mr. Bingham asked if they put off the MF to allow TxDOT to catch up - Mr. Kendall said they would love to have it all, but feedback was the city wanted the phasing approach.  Over 8 years, it gives the city time to catch up during development.  Mr. Bingham asked about number of projects they've done - company has 700 employees, 28 offices, about 200.  Mr. Bingham asked if they knew what traffic impact on those were when had MF and retail - Mr. Kendall said the traffic engineer in his home city said an all office development is worse, mixed use breaks it up.  Mr. Bingham said he lives off Ridgecrest, so is concerned about traffic.
          Mr. Traylor said 720 is a lot for a small area, he would like to see a TIA.  Mr. Brown said without TIA still looking at 360 units in the area + office traffic.
          There was no public input.
          Mr. Bingham asked if they could table it until TIA was done, then moved to table.  Mr. Kendall said their goal is a motion for or against, happy to have a requirement for TIA before go before council, they have deadlines to meet.  Chair. Shimkus asked about what would happen if they approved zoning.  Mr. Bingham withdrew his motion
          City Attorney John Thatcher said motion to approve with conditions is the same as motion to deny, he would avoid any motion with conditions.
          Mr. Traylor moved to deny, Ms. Holler second.  Mr. Bingham asked Mr. Thatcher if the applicant could bring it back after TIA - Mr. Thatcher said if denied w/o prejudice they can, otherwise they can appeal to council.  Motion amended to deny w/o prejudice.

    • Approved a Conditional Use Permit for an All-Terrain Vehicle Dealer/Sales to operate at 10500 E. U.S. Highway 80.
          Mr. Morgan said the business exists in a smaller building, want to expand to adjacent building, to expand must have a new CUP.  There have been no code or other violations from this business; council is concerned about presentation in the area.  No responses to public notices.
          Mr. Chambers asked if test drives of vehicles would occur - Mr. Morgan was not sure, do have ordinances about that.  Chair. Shimkus mentioned they had recently approved a golf cart business in the end building.
          There was no public input.
    • Approved a Conditional Use Permit for a farmers market to operate on the property located at 210 E. Broad Street.
          Mr. Morgan said this is Cotton Gin property, it would start small with just Mr. Gray selling, who has 37 years experience and with the FAC market that had operated there.  He requests to operate Fri - Sun, 8-6.  Parking is located on Cedar street, but isn't dedicated parking, which would be required.  If it does well, the market could be expanded.  No responses received to public notices. 
          Recent easing of permit terms has helped make this feasible.
          Chair. Shimkus said there was a farmers market there before, it was great.  Mr. Morgan verified it was same location.
          Ms. Kendall Milton spoke in favor of granting the CUP, Mr. Gray was a vendor with their event, they fully support him.  The FAC does have a 2020 permit at the site, they haven't done one due to covid situation.  They hope to do something in the fall, on Saturdays. That isn't an obstacle to Mr. Gray being there, area is large enough.  He will operate 3 days per week, FAC is only 2 days / month.
          Ms. Holler asked about parking being on Cedar st - Ms. Milton said it's Pacific st, could be some parking on Center st.  Ms. Holler asked if this was all outdoor - yes.  She asked about both events at the same time - Ms. Milton said it would be fine, Mr. Morgan said they have different designated parking.

  • Approved a revised preliminary plat for Overland Grove.
        Mr. Morgan said a recent zoning amendment was presented to them, it was not approved.  This revised plat complies with all requirements, not asking with changes to number of lot sizes.  They have provided property to the FISD in a different location from original plat.
  • Denied a replat for the Clements Park Addition, located northwest of the intersection of F.M. 740 and Clements Drive in the City of Forney extra-territorial jurisdiction.
        Mr. Morgan said this is in ETJ, undeveloped, 2 lots on 9.928 acres, is not designed to subdivision ordinances.  Staff sent members 9 comment points, applicant has agreed to 8 of them.  The outstanding one: makes no provision to realign 460 and 740 into continuous curve.  Staff recommend denial.
        Chair. Shimkus asked why the issue was not addressed, Mr. Morgan said there is a disagreement between the parties.
        Mr. Mathew Martinez, applicant is present.  Mr. Traylor asked why item 9 was not met - Mr. Martinez said they have hired an outside law firm to address the item, that has been supplied to staff.  Mr. Morgan confirmed, and there are discussion between the attorneys.
        Chair. Shimkus what exactly the issue is - Mr. Thatcher said there's not litigation; the concern is city's NW boundary, a lot of traffic coming from Travis Ranch.  City plan provides for realignment with Hubbard.  They provided drawings to developer who says it takes away 24% of the property.  City has to pay for ROW.  The applicant has requested a determination, which is allowed under law.  They have 30 days to respond.  It's unfair to ask P&Z to decide anything other than requesting the ROW be preserved.  Mr. Bingham asked if they could sue the city; Mr. Thatcher said one thing city may consider is traffic, they can ask for reservation; he feels safe they will not soon sue.  Mr. Bingham asked if this should be denied w/o prejudice; not necessary. 
        Chair. Shimkus asked about thoroughfare plan, which aligns w/ county plan - Mr. Morgan said comprehensive plan was 2016, thoroughfare was updated last year.
        Mr. Martinez asked if they were on the clock to reapply, or can this continue while being worked out? Mr. Thatcher suggested he contact their attorney, there is opportunity to appeal to council within 30 days.  No matter what P&Z action, could go before council on July 21.
  • Approved a final plat for Travis Ranch, Phase 1H, a residential subdivision located west of F.M. 740 and north of Lake Ray Hubbard Drive in the City of Forney extra-territorial jurisdiction.
        Mr. Morgan said this is 133 residential lots, access via Lake Ray Hubbard Drive, have no control over lot sizes, some of which are in 5700 ft range.  It does comply to ordinance.  One minor change was one lot moving line by 10 ft for a landscape buffer.
  • Approved a final plat for Travis Ranch South, a residential subdivision located west of F.M. 460 and north of U.S. Highway 80 in the City of Forney extra-territorial jurisdiction.
        Mr. Morgan said this is N. of Knox gas station, is split between Forney and Mesquite ETJ.  8.66 acres undeveloped, 43 residential lots + 5 HOA lots.  Lot sizes as small as 4600 sq ft, but have no zoning control and it complies with state laws.
  • Adjourned at 2010.
Thursday, 2020, July 2