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Published: Wednesday, 10/5/2005

Sylvania Township: Questions over Herr Road development


While the Lucas County Planning Commission apparently doesn't see any problems with a zoning change to allow for developing 112 houses on 5 acres of agricultural land in western Sylvania Township, its staff argues against the plan.

The township's master plan earmarked the site on Herr Road for industrial or office-commercial development, according to county planning staff.

In its written report, the staff said residential development at the site "is inconsistent with the recommendations of the adopted land-use plan,'' of the township. The report added that the community "would benefit more if the property was developed with office/light industrial uses,'' and taxed at those higher rates.

The report pointed out that the acreage to the north has been developed in that manner and, "is an excellent example of how the property should be developed.''

Don Feller, a consultant for developers Moses-Schlachter Group, said the land to the north is still not completely utilized and that it is unlikely that the site can be successfully developed as any use other than residential.

Utilizing the land for more tax revenue is a "commendable goal,'' he said, but "It just isn't happening.''

He pointed out to commissioners that much of the surrounding area is residential and that part of the township's land-use plan may be obsolete. The township is in the process of beginning a study to produce a new master plan.

Some Herr Road residents voiced concerns about the plan, but agreed that they preferred its being developed as a residential site rather than the proposed industrial of commercial.

Penny Levine, of Herr Road, said she had a concern about increased traffic on the 1-mile road that runs between Central and Sylvania avenues, but said she's happy to see housing.

A staff report from the zoning and development office of Sylvania Township also supported the zoning change.

The site plan shows two drives on Herr leading to two roads which will be constructed around two lakes, each about 2.5 acres.

The plan still must be submitted to the Sylvania Township Zoning Commission with a final decision to be made by township trustees.

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