Monday, March 12, 2001

Family farm may soon be developed

Planned unit development proposed

By Sue Kiesewetter
Enquirer Contributor

        WEST CHESTER TWP. — A 206-acre family farm may become a community of its own pending approval of zoning changes that would allow development of a tract at Ohio 747 and Tylersville Road.

        West Chester Township trustees will decide Tuesday whether to approve the changes for the land, which has been owned by the Hutzelman family since 1845. Now zoned suburban residence, the plan calls for a portion of the property to be rezoned commercial planned unit development and the rest residential planned unit development, said Mark Morrison, township planner.

        The development would include single-family homes, apartments, condominiums, shops, offices, a swimming pool, playground, walking paths and offices.

        Under the proposal, 9.4 acres would be donated to the Lakota Board of Education for an elementary school.

        Also, 39 acres would be developed for office and commercial use, 137 acres for single family and condominiums, and 30 acres for apartments.

        “The area around us is increasingly being developed,” said Martha Hutzelman, part owner of the property and a 1976 Lakota High School graduate. “There's commercial development and town houses to the south, and to the west and north there are single-family homes. It seemed to be the right time. We want the end result to be a legacy of our family.”

        The family selected In-Line Development Co. to put together the plan for the entire project, known as West Chester Village.

        The firm also will buy and develop the land earmarked for single-family and condominiums.

        The two commercial/office projects will be known as The Village Market, occupying 33 acres, and the Village Corner, six acres.

        Together, it will be 213,150 square feet of space, said David Wittekind, with In-Line.

        Eleven other lots will be available for restaurants and shops, and perhaps a health club.

        “We want to create a village atmosphere with the project,” he said. “There will be walking paths throughout so the residents can get to the shops, the school and the pool.”

        A creek running through the property plus several ponds that will double as drainage basins will divide the different uses, Mr. Wittekind said. About 30 percent of the property will remain as open space.

        Six neighborhoods within the project will be developed for residential use and include 255 single-family homes, 232 condominiums and 224 apartments in price ranges from affordable to luxury.

        The project should take five to seven years to complete.


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