(Posted April 14, 2021)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
In the next three to five years, residential housing in the village of Plain City could grow by 1,400 units. Leaders at Jonathan Alder Local Schools are watching the numbers and making plans for an influx of students.
At the April 12 school board meeting, Jonathan Alder Superintendent Gary Chapman said the district will reconvene its strategic planning committee which last met in 2019. Much has changed since that time, he said, referring to the increase in the projected number of additional housing units coming to the area.
Should the district conduct another enrollment study? Does the district need to survey the community again about their vision for the future of the school district? What does Jonathan Alder’s future look like in the next five to 10 years? These are questions the committee and the district as a whole will tackle.
As part of the process, Chapman invited Taylor Brill, Plain City’s zoning official, to update school board members on current proposals for new housing in the village. Brill referred to the village’s “development story map,” accessible to the public via the village’s website at www.plain-city.com/planning—zoning. Plain City officials update the map as developments move through different phases and as new developments are proposed.
Brill reviewed five residential housing projects, each of which is in a different phase of development and approval.
- Darby Station–MI Homes is proposing the construction of 500 to 700 housing units on 335 acres known as the former McKitrick farmland along State Route 161. The development would feature a mix of single-family homes, condominiums, and multi-family units. A central green area would include a clubhouse and swimming pool for residents. On April 21, the final plan for the entire development, as well as the final development plan for the first phase (102 homes), goes before Plain City’s planning commission.
- Jefferson Village–Homewood Corp. is proposing construction of approximately 100 townhomes and apartments on 6.5 acres along U.S. Route 42. The company has submitted a final record plan. The village is waiting on engineering details. A final plat approval is pending. Brill said Homewood plans to kick off construction in the next three to four months.
- Madison Meadows–Highland Real Estate Group/DR Horton plans to build 250 single-family homes and condos on 104 acres along Lafayette Plain City Road and Perry Pike. A 12-acre park, walking trails and ponds are part of the plans. Brill said 85 housing units are planned in the first phase; construction should start this fall. The final development plan has been approved. The final plat goes before Plain City’s planning commission on April 21.
- Oak Grove–Plain City One LLC/Evergreen Land Co. plans to build single-family homes on 235 lots on 98 acres along the west side of U.S. Route 42, south of the intersection of 42 and Perry Pike. A park area and trails are planned. The final development plan has been approved. The village is waiting on engineering details. The last time the developers were in contact with the village was last fall, Brill said.
- The Run at Hofbauer House–Rockford Homes is proposing the construction of 100 single-family homes on 39 acres on North Chillicothe Street, north of Noteman Road and directly across from Pastime Park. A central open space will feature a nature sensory park. A multi-use path also is planned. Rezoning and a preliminary development plan have been approved.
Following the presentation, school board member Bill McCartney asked Brill about the status of Plain City’s water taps. He said he had heard the village is running out of taps for new development.
Brill confirmed that the tap numbers is an issue. She said the village has submitted plans for upsizing the wastewater treatment facility and is awaiting approval, pending a review by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
“The upsizing will accommodate more incoming development,” she explained.
Based on conversations with the EPA and others, village leaders are confident the expansion will move forward but cannot confirm the plans at this time, Brill said.