More than a year after city leaders told the developer of Kettle Park West they would not discuss further development without a second road to state Hwy. 138, Forward Development Group (FDG) has proposed moving ahead with a housing subdivision on the site.
The first step in the process is a concept plan, which seeks feedback from the Planning Commission and the Common Council before returning for a vote. That starts with a meeting Monday, Dec. 10, where the commission will review revisions to the concept plan that was proposed in January 2016.
The revisions, submitted by Verona-based JSD Professional Services, on behalf of FDG, ask for approvals for the first of five parts of the second phase, 2B. That shows 45 single-family home lots, ranging from 7,800 to 15,000 square feet, plus a 3.4-acre neighborhood park and path.
The first phase was the Walmart-anchored shopping center, and 2A included a hotel and senior housing complex. The submission also suggests getting the council’s OK for Phase 2C, but those plans are not detailed.
The overall Phase 2 submission to the commission, which could change based on staff feedback, includes 160 single-family residential lots, 18 duplex units and 43 moderate-density units. It also includes almost 12 acres of park land, an extension of Jackson Street and the construction of unnamed streets and trails. The original plan included 311 multi-family residential units and 60 single-family.
The Jackson Street project would extend the street past the intersection at Oak Opening Drive, which is the road to 138. A new street, marked on the plan as “A,” would connect the two and also another new street, marked “B.”
Road “B” would be a key part of Phase 3, which would continue housing development to the northwest part of KPW.
The revisions come more than two years after the council took a firm stance against funding the project. In 2016, FDG informally suggested seeking TIF assistance for building Oak Opening Drive, which the state has not yet approved for access.
Phase 2 has been in discussions with the developers, commission and Common Council for several years, but development has stalled, apparently as a result of slowing demands for retail and funding for road construction.
“The realities of the commercial retail market have led to slower-than-expected retail development,” FDG wrote in its proposal to the commission, dated Oct. 11.
The newest business at Kettle Park West, Great Clips, opened six weeks ago, and Dunkin Donuts opened in July. Pancake Cafe opened in April. Kwik Trip and Aldi both opened in the fall of 2017.
The first part of Phase 2 includes the Tru by Hilton hotel, and after a few hiccups, developers secured – and rescued, after it expired – a permit for the construction of the building.
That construction was anticipated to start in May and be completed by March 2019, but it has been on hold, FDG manager Dennis Steinkraus told the Hub in January and confirmed Monday.
The council told FDG in August 2016 an access point from Phase 2 area to state Hwy. 138 would be required before it would allow construction on that part of the development.
On the submitted Phase 2 map, with a tentative outline of Phase 3, developers plan on a future extension of Oak Opening Drive, but the Phase 2 plan does not include extending the road to Hwy. 138. It’s labeled Future ROW, or right-of-way, indicating access has yet to be provided.
That wasn’t included in the 2016 plans, the Hub reported, because FDG was seeking assistance with funding the road construction and needed approval from the Department of Transportation. The city had provided $4.5 million in TIF to help support the commercial center, anchored by the Walmart Supercenter, but had expressed no interest in providing additional TIF money for future developments at KPW.
Assistant planning director Michael Stacey told the Hub in an email he “knows there is not much interest shown by the city to provide assistance at this point.”
Steinkraus said Dec. 3 he “can’t comment” on funding for Phase 2. He said they are “still reviewing” project plans and have been working to “lessen or remove completely” the TIF plat from the plan.