Duplex development proposed for city's southwest

Nov. 15—A residential development is again being proposed for a more than 3-acre property on the city's southwest side.

The Kokomo City Council on Monday voted unanimously to move forward to a second and final reading a rezoning request for a 3.17-acre plot of land located at 2331 W. Lincoln Road from office commercial to general multifamily residential.

The developers, Rick Singh and Champreet Kaur, hope to build 10 one-story duplex buildings on what is now vacant land just east and south of Ladd Dental Group.

The duplexes will be a mixture of two and three bedroom units with a one-car garage for each unit, with rent between $1,700 and $2,000 a month and will be part of a gated community with a private road running through the middle of the housing development, according to Kevin Steely, of Terra Site Development and the engineer for the project.

A preliminary concept layout given to the City Council shows the majority of the duplexes on the property's south and southeast sides and a turnaround and detention pond on the northeast side.

Details of the development, such as the number of duplexes, setbacks and final layout of the development, are subject to change as the project still needs to receive development plan approval from the Kokomo Plan Commission at a later date. That is if the rezoning request is approved.

The proposed housing development is the second residential proposal for the plot in as many months.

A previous developer, Jameel Murphy, CEO of Zam Development, sought twice rezone the property to general multifamily residential. Initially, the plan was to construct between 25-30 two-story townhomes.

After that was voted down by the City Council, Murphy sought rezoning again to build seven, two-story condominium duplexes. The City Council voted the second rezoning request down after they learned Murphy had pulled out of the project.

Those proposals faced fierce pushback from residents of the adjacent Executive Place of Westbrook Homeowners Association.

Residents' major concerns were the potential loss of privacy as the townhomes would be multistory, the proximity of the new townhomes to the HOA's privacy fence, the increase in traffic to the area and the belief that the number of townhomes was too much for the space.

The change from multistory townhomes to single-story duplexes was made in an effort to abate the privacy concerns.

Leaders and residents of the HOA attended and spoke at Monday's City Council meeting, with many of the same concerns as before.

"That area is not big enough for multiple dwellings like they're trying to put in there," Carol Croxford, president of the Executive Place HOA, said. "We're concerned about our privacy if this is done, the traffic that's going to be involved with this, the extra noise, the destruction of our fences. We're asking you, please do not rezoning this for multifamily dwellings."

City Council discussion on the rezoning request was negligible this time around, with some of the council members telling HOA residents to bring their questions and concerns to the possible future development plan approval meeting.

Tyler Juranovich can be reached at 765-454-8577, by email at tyler.juranovich@kokomotribune.com or on Twitter at @tylerjuranovich.