By Cassidy White
KOSCIUSKO COUNTY — The Kosciusko County Area Planning Commission held its monthly meeting the afternoon of Wednesday, June 1.
Tempers flared and voices raised when Steve Snyder, on behalf of Gregory Kralis, brought forth two petitions, the first of which requesting to rezone a 2.80 acre tract — located on the north side of CR 510N in Plain Township — to Agricultural II in order to create a two lot subdivision. The county highway department requested that the driveways be located as far from the road curves as possible, while Louis Vogt remonstrated on the basis Magical Meadows should be given favor for the land.
“Magical Meadows is growing by leaps and bounds … Century 21 Foundation has offered to back Magical Meadows in purchasing the land,” said Vogt.
The second petition concerned property directly to the north with the intent to rezone the entire property to Agricultural II. Despite previous complaints, Snyder said, “All but one of the petitions before you today have been about Agricultural II. That tells me there is a significant demand for this type of land use.” Both petitions were given favorable recommendation.
Wawasee Community School Corp. brought forth a petition to rezone one acre of public use land — located on the west side of Sycamore Street and southwest of Pickwick Street in Turkey Creek Township. The intent is to lease the property to a reputable company for the purpose of erecting a new communications tower. WCSC Superintendent Steve Troyer brought to attention the biggest problem, saying, “Quite frankly, the service in town — especially in the summer months as people return home for their summer homes — becomes almost unbearable.”
Syracuse currently only has 10 communication towers, with one being located just outside the city. Anyone who lives in or has visited Syracuse has noticed the lack of cell reception and the annoying issue of having phone calls abruptly dropped. With this new tower, Wawasee School Corp. hopes to provide better service to its community and schools. Favorable recommendation was given, though, board member Jon Garber opposed, mentioning his skepticism about how well a single tower would work given current cell reception.
Another petition brought forth was from South Shore Ventures to rezone ground from residential to commercial. South Shore Ventures has been aiming to completely redevelop what was once the South Shore Golf Course, located on the south side of SR 13 in Turkey Creek Township. The area rezone is that around the existing restaurant.
Snider said Lakeland Youth Center has made a commitment to acquire and develop the remaining 20-acre partial for a new location for outdoors sports fields should this petition be finalized. According to Snyder, “There’s still a lot of work to do … a good portion of it with INDOT.”
Snyder noted, “There are some really exciting things going on with the youth center, but they’re still in the preliminary stages. The remaining land will be used for commercial development to enhance the existing restaurant and looking for the appropriate recreation for the public. A favorable recommendation will be sent to the commissioners.
The APC approved the rezoning of 20 acres from residential to agricultural and 54.12 acres from public use to residential at its April meeting.
Other items on the agenda included:
- Two plats awaiting final approval, the Eberly Final plat and the Anderson final plats — both of which were approved as presented.
- Rita Hyde petitioned to rezone a portion of her property — located on the north side of CR 125N in Harrison Township — to Agricultural II subdivision in order to have their son have a home on the property. Preliminary plat was approved.
- John Hicks petitioned to rezone 2.05 acres of land — located on the south side of CR 700S west of County Farm Road in Clay Township. The petition was approved with the condition that the deed state the property cannot be divided further. David Shively remonstrated on behalf of himself and neighbors Paul Gannon and Kathy Hamman. Favorable recommendation will be given.
- Oakwood and SR 13N were both given tax increment financing approvals in response to the Syracuse Town Council meeting last month. This TIF will allow taxes to be reallocated to further the economic development of the area, which will bring in more taxpayers and more revenue.
The next Kosciusko County Area Planning Committee meeting will take place 1 p.m. July 6.