By PAULENE POPARAD
Developers of 362-home Sand
Creek Farms, Chesterton’s largest residential subdivision yet, said Thursday
they hope to have the first housing ready to deliver to homebuyers in 18 to
The Chesterton Advisory Plan
Commission voted 4-0 Thursday granting primary plat approval to Eric
Gastevich and Vlad Gastevich as Olson Farms LLC for the 130-acre
subdivision. It will be located on the east side of County Road 250E at the
terminus of East Porter Avenue.
Primary plat approval allows
developers to install infrastructure like streets, water lines, and storm
and sanitary sewers but no lots can be sold until secondary plat is granted.
The brothers have been
seeking approvals for various stages of the three-phase planned unit
development since 2007. A public hearing took place months ago and since
then detailed engineering has been reviewed, revised by developers and
reviewed again by town staff.
Last night, town engineer
Mark O’Dell said he had no remaining issues. Although the construction
drawings have been revised and the layout of the storm and sanitary sewers
changed on the primary plat, nothing about the plan of development has
changed, he told the commission.
Member George Stone asked
how the current economic downturn will affect the Gastevich project,
initially slated for late 2009 construction.
Eric Gastevich said he and
his brother have worked for 20 years as developers and this is the third
recession they’ve seen, now creating horrendous times for the housing
market. “These will pass. Those in trouble today were in trouble one, two,
three years ago.” In anticipation of a possible downturn, Gastevich said his
partnership took steps in 2005 to better position itself for the future.
Eric Gastevich also said
they’re excited about Sand Creek Farms because of its proximity to the South
Shore commuter railroad, and because of the quality of life the Duneland
area has to offer. “It’s not easy to replicate.”
Part of the Sand Creek Farms
PUD includes donation of 20 acres to the southeast on County Road 1050N for
a major town park. Duneland School Corp. owns adjacent property and plans to
help develop the park as well as use it for athletics.
As for all new residential
dwelling units in Chesterton, each building permit issued for Sand Creek
Farms will include a $1,171 recreation impact fee for purchase/development
of new parks. When it’s built out, Sand Creek Farms will be responsible for
contributing nearly $424,000 to the park system.
Members Steve Yagelski,
Emerson DeLaney and Fred Owens were absent Thursday.