By Andrea Cordle
Grove City Editor
After months of postponement, Grove City Council approved the rezoning and development plan for the Communities at Plum Run.
The housing development is located north of State Route 665 and east of State Route 104. The rezoning legislation changes the code from single family to planned unit development on 144 acres of land. Pulte Homes plans to build a residential subdivision that includes 266 single family homes and 94 condominiums. The development plan also includes a multi-use path, a playground, and open space.
The rezoning and development plan has been postponed since November 2022 to give the developer and city officials time to meet with representatives from the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) and Jackson Township to address traffic concerns in the area.
As part of the development plan, Pulte Homes conducted a traffic study that was approved by the city of Grove City.
“Traffic will increase significantly with or without Plum Run due to growth in the area,” said Jim Hilz, with Pulte Homes. “We wanted to be part of the traffic solution.”
Several residents addressed the council who were not in favor of the proposal.
John Riley said his property is surrounded by the proposed development. He said traffic has been a major issue in that area for years and nothing has been done about it. He said there have been numerous accidents and adding this housing development will just put more vehicles on the already overcrowded roadway. Riley said his wife was even rear-ended trying to turn into their driveway.
“This development is wrong for the area,” said Riley.
Resident David Ott said that in addition to the traffic worries, residents had concerns about the density of the proposal. He said more than 200 residents have signed a petition asking the city not to change the zoning code.
According to Hilz, the Communities at Plum Run will be the same density as other housing developments in that area.
Council president Ted Berry said if they kept the zoning as single family, there would be no green space.
“We would lose out on parkland. We would lose out on intersection improvements,” said Berry.
Kyle Rauch, the city’s development director, said there will be about $6 million in roadway improvements. As part of the development plan, Pulte Homes will contribute $3 million toward infrastructure improvements, including the installation of seven turn lanes into the community, and the rest will be public funds that would likely be reimbursed through tax increment financing dollars.
The public improvements include a right and left turn lane onto State Route 104 for those traveling east on State Route 665, and a left turn lane onto 104 for those traveling west on 665. There will also be a right turn lane to 665 from 104 in the southbound lane.
City leaders are hoping that the state will lower the speed limit along those routes with the addition of the new housing developments. According to Rauch, ODOT is still finalizing its traffic study for the area.