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Duplex subdivision gets conceptual OK PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 19 July 2017 19:55

Project that calls for 16 two-family houses on Port’s southwest side receives positive feedback from commission

    A proposal for a new subdivision on Port Washington’s southwest side that could accommodate 16 duplexes received conceptual approval from the city’s Plan Commission last month.
    A revised plan reflecting some changes recommended by the commission, such as creating a through street rather than a cul-de-sac, will be reviewed by the panel when it meets at 6 p.m. Thursday, July 20.
    Developer Lew Herro told the Plan Commission last month that the proposal for a 12-acre property at the northwest corner of Highway LL and Sunset Road is a “meat and potatoes” development that would complement higher-end housing recently approved by the city.
    “There are still a lot of people who want to own their own property,” said Herro, who presented the plan on behalf of property owner Mike Panarusky. “We’re not here to compete with all these fine developments.”
    The lots are “good sized,” Herro said, and would fit a mix of duplex styles, from ranch-style houses to two-story buildings,  or single-family houses.
    On some of the corner lots, he said, the duplex could be a single story on one side and two floors on the other.
    The minimum size for the duplexes would be 1,900 square feet, Herro said, and for ranch-style houses 1,600 square feet. Most of the houses, he added, would be larger than this.
    While there is no way to keep the property owner from renting out both sides of the duplexes, the market will likely ensure the duplexes will be owner occupied, Herro told the Design Review Board early last week.
    He estimated the cost of the duplexes would be about $400,000.
    “I think the market will encourage it (duplexes),” he said. “This is for somebody who wants to live there.”
    Herro noted that there’s a dearth of duplex lots in the area, while many families would like the option of building a home they can live in with their parents or siblings next door.
    “People young and old want to be able to build a duplex,” he said, adding that duplexes on the market today tend to be older buildings, not new structures.
    A three-acre lot on the south side of the subdivision is being reserved for a potential assisted living facility, Herro added.
    Herro’s plan, which was also endorsed by the Design Review Board, drew praise from both panels.
    “It’s a natural continuation of the development that’s already out there,” Plan Commission member Tony Matera said, referring to the neighboring Greystone Subdivision.
    “I think this use seems appropriate to the site,” commission member Amanda Williams added.
    “Our goal has always been to provide housing choices,” Randy Tetzlaff, the city’s director of planning and development, said. “This is all part of it.”
    Fire Chief Mark Mitchell, a member of the Design Review Board, concurred, saying, “I think it’s important we have a variety of housing out there.”
    “This would add to the mix in Port Washington,” review board member Jorgen Hansen added. “I think the concept is nice.”
    While Herro proposed the subdivision be developed along a cul-de-sac, the Plan Commission specified that a through street connecting to Galena Drive be constructed instead.  
    The subdivision plan has a ways to go before it becomes reality.
    In addition to the normal reviews, the property, which is in the Town of Port, must also be annexed to the city.
    “There are many steps involved,” Tetzlaff said.

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