Public hearing held on major amendment to Apple Blossom Center, PDD


Courtesy Guy Evans/ABC The areas in orange show the property owned by the new owners of Apple Blossom Center - the area of the proposed development. The light green areas are open space and will remain as open space.

Mark Neal, MJ Neal Associates, represents Apple Blossom Center Holdings

RuthEdna Keys/LCM Andy Kottkamp, hearing examiner for the City of Chelan.

City of Chelan Planner John Ajax

City of Chelan Engineer Travis Denham

CHELAN - The City of Chelan held a public hearing in the City of Chelan Council Chambers, before the City of Chelan Hearing Examiner Andy Kottkamp, on June 14, concerning a major amendment to the Apple Blossom Center, Planned Development District (PDD). City of Chelan Planner John Ajax, read the proposed amendment to the packed and standing room only council chambers.

The Major Amendment proposes to to allow multifamily housing as a permitted use within the existing PDD boundary, to remove the current cap on the ratio of commercial and industrial uses, and to update and amend the implementing Development Agreement “DA”.

Multifamily housing is proposed to be allowed on up to a maximum of 30 acres within the existing 198 acre PDD boundary at a gross density of 24 units per acre, resulting in a maximum of 720 multifamily dwelling units. Gross density would allow individual projects to exceed 24 units an acre, resulting in a lower density for the remaining multi-family acreage. The project area is located at U.S. 97A, SR 150, Apple Blossom, Gala, Golden, Pinata; commonly known as “Apple Blossom Center,'' and the project applicant is Apple Blossom Center Holdings, LLC in Kirkland.

First to speak about the proposed amendment was Mark Neal, of MJ Neal Associates, representing Apple Blossom Center Holdings, who said they agreed with the staff report, and said they were asking that residential be added to the PDD so they could address the housing shortage in the Chelan area. They have elected to go with Market Rate housing, with the addition of some local income housing to compliment that, and some 55 and older to add some diversity. They would also be connecting the pedestrian link (sidewalks) from the traffic at Apple Blossom Drive to the downtown sidewalk system, that is already in place. Housing within the project would be phased in over time; and Short Term Rentals will not be allowed. A watersystem upgrade would also improve water pressure and fireflow to surrounding neighbors.

Concerns, comments from the public included water pressure in the Suncrest development, affordable housing is needed - but they don't like the size, how the quality of life will change; increase in crime, increase in traffic through the Suncrest development and in downtown Chelan, parking on the streets in the proposed development and downtown Chelan, the need for a traffic study, the need for another water reservoir in Chelan, the sewage treatment plant, concerns about evacuation of the area in case of a wildfire if round-a-bouts are put in; how people have been encouraged to come to Chelan, that they would rather see the hillsides, rather than all the lights of homes; and that the village concept in great.

Kottkamp encourages residents when they have a question about city facilities to contact City of Chelan staff.

After public comment, Kottkamp asked Travis Denham, city engineer about water pressure and the sewage treatment plant.

Water pressure

The City of Chelan has asked the developer to upgrade the Washington Street booster pump station to meet maximum daily demand for the complete build out and a waterline project will make it more efficient. It has sufficient fire flow for that zone for the extended future. The city is actively pursuing funding for a long term solution, a large reservoir that would meet the needs of a very large percentage of the community from the Suncrest development to the Darnell's Resort area.

Sewage treatment plant

Collection system of the Naumes property was built out to meet the original plan for the area, and is sufficient for the proposed developmet. Right now the peak with are experiencing in 2022 it is roughly 30-40 percent of what the treatment plant can operate at, so  we are decades away from need any significant upgrades as the result of capacity.

Kottkamp has 10 working days, from the date of the hearing, to put together his recommendation and give it to the City of Chelan staff, who will pass it along to city council for their decision on the proposed amendment.

For more about the Apple Blossom Vision go to AppleBlossomVision.com.

 

 

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