Pedcor submits revised Cary site plan, might be OK'd for permits by year's end

CARY – Weeks after losing an appeal regarding lot coverage calculations, Pedcor Industries has submitted a modified site plan for its proposed affordable housing complex in an attempt to comply with village ordinance.

Village officials received the plan Tuesday afternoon, Village Administrator Chris Clark said, and are in the process of checking the calculations provided by Pedcor to make sure they are correct.

If the plan is found to be in compliance, building permits for the complex could be issued by the end of the year, Clark said.

"Obviously, this has been a project that’s taken some time to get to a possible construction stage," Clark said. "The parties worked together to identify an approach that complied with village ordinance, which was essentially the direction of the Board of Zoning, Planning and Appeals."

The controversial Garden Place Apartments project at First and Pearl streets was approved by a 4-2 vote of the Village Board in June 2014, but after a delay in the permit process, village officials discovered a miscalculation in lot coverage that required the company to file a variance request.

In August, the zoning board voted against a variance that would allow the project to increase lot coverage from the usual 45 percent to 55 percent. An October appeal of the initial staff decision that necessitated the variance was also voted down by the zoning board.

The revised plan still includes 60 units but appears to reduce lot coverage to 44.4 percent, Clark said. The major changes in this plan include a reconfigured parking lot, the removal of the swimming pool and gazebo, and a reduction in clubhouse size.

The plan also removed a third entrance point on Pearl Street that had originally been requested by the Cary Fire Protection District.

Cary Fire Capt. Andy Veath said that driveway was no longer necessary because a parking lot that had been near Pearl Street was eliminated in the new plan. Pedcor's engineer worked with the fire department on that change, he said.

The company is using permeable pavement and seeking a credit outlined in Section 17 of the Village Code, which allows certain construction materials to be reduced in area by 20 percent when calculating overall lot coverage.

The plan also needs to be re-reviewed by the McHenry County Stormwater Management Commission, Clark said.

Trustee Rick Dudek, who voted for the approval of the project last summer, said he was happy Pedcor had worked to conform to code and hopeful that the new development would help address an "obvious need" in Cary.

"I’m very ecstatic that we seem to have been able to reach a compromise that’s going to be consistent with our code and allow this developer to move forward with a significant improvement to this part of town," Dudek said.

Trustee Jim Cosler, who was elected as a write-in candidate in April after leading a citizens' group that fought the Pedcor project, said in a statement Wednesday that he believed it "would be in the taxpayer's best interest" for the Illinois Housing Development Authority to re-evaluate its use of tax credits on the project but that he was "content" that Pedcor decided to follow the lot coverage rules

"In the end, our residents will never forget how little their opinions meant during this drawn out procedure," Cosler's statement said. "Though there is a positive side, Cary residents have come together for our community like never before. ... Now, as a Village Trustee, I am happy to be a part of that process."

Clark said the village and stormwater reviews will likely take a couple of weeks. If the plan is approved by both, the building permit process will begin.

"We’re going to take plenty of time to go through all the calculations to verify what’s being asked," Clark said. "It looks to be a reasonable conclusion to this issue that popped up before the building permit was approved. It looks now that they’ve dealt with the issue and we’re ready to move forward."

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