Chesterton Tribune

 

 

East Chesterton building boom: Easton Park homes approved to begin, Coffee Creek Center strip mall advances

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By PAULENE POPARAD

By a simple 7-0 vote Thursday the Chesterton Advisory Plan Commission rebooted a 362-home planned unit development approved in 2008 but never started.

After the meeting developer Eric Gastevich of Olson Farms, LLC said he hopes to start site work this winter for future construction of the initial phase having traditional single-family homes as well as single-family residences with exterior maintenance provided through assessments.

The 130-acre Easton Park project on the east side of County Road 250E at the eastern terminus of East Porter Avenue will have a mix of lot sizes and housing options --- all single family --- and both public and private roads.

Commission attorney Charles Parkinson told members the 2008 approval was subject to final engineering although no time limit was set on when it had to be completed. Because engineering details and the sanitary sewer allocation approval now are in hand, Parkinson advised that the conditions have been satisfied and no additional review or hearings are required.

Calling the project Easton Park instead of the original Sand Creek Farms was too minor a change to reopen the PUD petition, he added.

The commission dealt with other petitions Thursday and efficiently dispatched of last night’s full agenda in less than one hour. Members also:

*  Set a Nov. 20 preliminary hearing for Mainstreet Property Group’s new 7,750 square-foot skilled nursing and assisted-living facility in Coffee Creek Center. Construction would start spring of 2015 and take one year until occupancy.

*  Set a Nov. 20 public hearing on 16-lot, Phase 1 of the new Brassie Estates subdivision north of The Brassie golf course clubhouse on Pearson Road (County Road 125W). The subdivision will share The Brassie’s entrance and that road will become a continuation of Niblick Avenue across the street to the east.

*  Set a Nov. 20 public hearing on Lake Erie Land Co.’s petition to amend the lot lines for 3 1/2 acres at the northeast corner of Gateway Boulevard and Village Point Drive in Coffee Creek Center. A purchaser wants to build a strip mall and two office buildings there.

Speaking for Mainstreet Property Group, Jeff Ban of DVG said Coffee Creek Center’s PUD needs to be amended to create one, 8.5-acre lot for the 106-bed facility, which will be similar to ones now under construction by Mainstreet in Crown Point and Dyer.

Mainstreet development director Michael Klingl said the Chesterton facility will offer 70 skilled-nursing beds for rehabilitation and 36 assisted-living rooms, some studio units and some with a separate bedroom, primarily as a transitional stop between rehab and home although longer stays are possible. About 100 to 125 permanent jobs would be created, many higher paying, he noted.

Klingl said billions of dollars in later-life medical infrastructure needs to be built as millions of Baby Boomers retire over the next 30-35 years.

Ban said Chesterton was chosen because of its location between Porter Regional Hospital and the Franciscan healthcare facility, and because Coffee Creek Center has other medical-related providers in the Gateway Boulevard area where Mainstreet will be.

Ban said the exterior of the new nursing facility will have a Frank Lloyd Wright feel and be angled on the lot because of wetlands there. Inside, Ban said the planned amenities are chic and will make the residents feel like they’re on vacation.

Larger lots planned

Shilling Development manager Jack Slater said Brassie Estates will have 80-foot by 140-foot lots when the Chesterton town code for Residential-1 requires only 75 feet by 127 feet.

He explained the new north/south road serving Phase 1, which will parallel Pearson Road, will end in a temporary cul-de-sac to allow emergency vehicles.

Slater said the lots on the east side of that road have back yards that face Pearson Road but there will be no access to it; he indicated if those homeowners want to put up fences, the developer prefers they be a uniform height, probably 4 feet.

As future subdivision development proceeds to the north, Slater said the project will be about 20 to 30 feet from the Prairie Duneland hike/bike trail and Shilling may want to provide access to it.

No-show but advances

Lake Erie Land owns the property where Tony Vendramin wants to build the Gateway Boulevard strip mall and office buildings so LEL is the actual petitioner, but no one representing the company was present Thursday and Vendramin didn’t have a power of attorney to act on its behalf.

Vendramin explained he’s anxious to close on the land and begin construction.

Parkinson said LEL’s paperwork was in order and a motion to set the matter for public hearing could take place. Prior to the vote to do so commission member Jeff Trout said, “It seems a shame Lake Erie can’t pay attention to its own business.”

Member Emerson DeLaney said of Vendramin, “We have someone who wants to invest in our community for what (Coffee Creek Center’s) intended for.”

In other business, the commission continued until Nov. 20 last night’s planned public hearing for LEL when its required hearing notification proved to be deficient. That request is to carve out as a separate lot Sand Creek golf course’s old clubhouse and parking lot for possible redevelopment.

 

Posted 10/17/2014

 
 
 
 

 

 

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