Chesterton Tribune



Pope Farm PUD goes before planners tonight

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The Chesterton Advisory Plan Commission meets tonight at 6:30 p.m. to review preliminary plans for the Alliance Business Center planned unit development, located at Popeís Farm on an 81-acre parcel at County Road 950N and Indiana 49.

In June developers pitched the concept of duplicating the success of Portageís Ameriplex industrial park here but with the addition of residential housing; commission members were receptive yet stressed itís critical that a new traffic signal at the Indiana 49 intersection precede the development.

Chesterton is completing installation of a utility corridor along Indiana 49 extending municipal sewer and water to the south in hopes of making vacant land along the route more marketable.

In June, Terry Larson of Larson-Danielson Construction Co. representing Allianceís inventors said leading companies would be pursued to bring quality improvements and good wages to the shovel-ready Pope Farm sites.

Larson also said Chestertonís zoning ordinance doesnít give much definition to light industrial so mutual agreement on allowable uses in the new business center would be required; a PUD gives developers and the town greater flexibility to negotiate terms favorable to both sides.

A PUD also can establish specific design standards for the projectís overall appearance.

Although some residential uses initially were proposed to abut the business-center lots, Larson said it wouldnít be a significant part of the project. The Alliance parcel is north of Porter Regional Hospital but doesnít have direct access to it.

If the Plan Commission agrees with the PUD concept plans, a future public hearing would be set.

Also tonight, a public hearing will be continued for Lake Erie Land Co., which was a no-show in July, on its request to amend its PUD for Coffee Creek Centerís Second Addition; the change has been described as a non-substantive amendment to the legal description.

The change is necessary to clean up paperwork for the recent purchase of 157 acres by Urschel Laboratories Inc., which is moving its manufacturing plant and corporate headquarters from Valparaiso to Chesterton. Groundbreaking to develop the first 75 acres took place July 11. The commission also will hear a status report from the committee charged with reviewing town sign ordinances and recommending changes.


Posted 8/15/2013