Age-restricted housing removed from Bargersville development

A Bargersville commission this week OK’d a request to replace age-restricted multi-family housing with single-family homes and townhomes in a planned development.

The Commerce Grove developer came to the Bargersville Plan Commission Wednesday to modify commitments to a project that was approved in 2021. The change in commitments was approved with a favorable recommendation 6-0.

In 2021, the nearly 47-acre site side of Commerce Grove at State Road 135 and Two Cent Road was rezoned from General Commercial to Mixed Use Arterial. With the Unified Development Code updated in 2022, the Mixed Use Arterial became a mixed-use district. The developer was granted a primary plat in October 2021 and came back in January 2022 to edit the plat following a traffic study recommendation to change the layout of streets.

The 46-acre development would have included 100 age-restricted duplex units, an 184-unit apartment complex and a commercial building that would house multiple businesses.

Under the new proposal, approximately 34.77 acres of the site will be restricted to single-family and townhomes, while the remaining 12.58 acres along State Road 135 will be developed in the future with mixed-use permitted uses including commercial/ multi-family uses.

The updated plans remove duplexes and multi-family housing that would have been age-restricted for people 55 years and older. Instead, the developer plans to build more single-family homes and townhomes that can be sold to people of any age.

Lennar Homes will build single-family homes and townhome units with two to three bedrooms, a den, and two-car attached garages with alley access. The price for the townhomes will range between $320,000 and $370,000, the developer says.

Tree preservation and pedestrian access commitments will stay the same, along with a commitment that the area abutting the Summer Garden subdivision will be restricted to single-family homes. There is also a commitment to build no more than 450 total residential units on the site, plans submitted to the town show

A landscape buffer would now extend through the northern boundary of the property and a 20-foot buffer area would now be installed between the commercial/multi-family and single-family, townhome residential areas, plans show.

A public hearing on the commitment modifications was held and two residents spoke. They raised concerns about the buffers and traffic.

David Cecil, who lives in Summer Gardens adjacent to the development, said his neighbors are “very concerned” about the buffer between their homes and the development. Cecil is also concerned about the density of the project and questioned why the lots were so small.

Chad Paulin, a local business owner, said he is worried Two Cent Road cannot handle the additional traffic. There is already a lot of traffic on the road from nearby homes and businesses, he said.

“We are adding a lot of traffic and it could be a safety issue as well,” Paulin said.

Plan Commission members also expressed concern about the development’s entrance at Two Cent Road, which was a sticking point when this development was approved in 2021. The developers agreed to make all improvements outlined in the original plan.

Work near the development on State Road 135 is still in the Indiana Department of Transportation’s work plans, said Joe Csikos, director of development. A roundabout is expected to be built there but the project doesn’t have an expected start date at this point, he said.

Developers will have to come back before the plan commission with a full development plan in the future.

Construction could begin later this year developers said, but the state date will depend on final approval.