Canopy Hills Back on Track

home : union grove : union grove October 04, 2009

10/2/2009 3:35:00 PM  Email this articlePrint this article 
Canopy Hills back on track

Karen Mahoney
CORRESPONDENT



Despite the economic downturn and sluggish home development market, the Village of Union Grove voted to reaffirm the Preliminary Plat and the Conceptual Plan for Development of the Canopy Hill Subdivision Monday night.

The board met in a combined meeting with the Community Development Authority and the Union Grove Plan Commission.


With a few tweaks in the original project, Ray Leffler, project developer explained that the 157-acre development would be better served by replacing a couple of twin-condominiums with an assisted living center south of St. Robert Bellarmine Catholic church and west of the future site of the new Union Grove/Yorkville fire station.

Leffler is working with three assisted living companies that would provide housing for a variety of senior needs, such as ambulatory, Alzheimer’s and nursing home care. The complex would also include a senior recreation area and could work in conjunction with St. Robert’s church. Eliminating the need for bank financing is another benefit to incorporating the senior living community, as each of the three companies are financed by stockholders and would be ready to build immediately in this area.

“We are also thinking of moving some of the Twindominiums on the Southwest side back toward the wooded area,” Leffler said. “This will give spectacular back yards to the homes there and will be a better setup for the seniors as well.”

Upscale brick, aesthetically pleasing apartments would be included in the southeast corner, which would add immediate increment generated to the development area, and would be more appealing to lenders who are hesitant to take on large development areas.

“We would need to do a market study to justify rents, but it would generate an increment of $10 million a lot quicker than a housing generated increment,” said Leffler. “So with these three components, it is worth looking into for this area.”

An estimated 21 single-family half-acre lots coupled with approximately 100 apartment units and assisted living would be beneficial to the village that is lacking in senior living and new apartment units.

“The homes would list in the upper $200s or lower $300s,” said Leffler. “While this is a change from the original concept, it isn’t feasible now to do a single family front end loaded concept. We can’t sell lots of $140,000 each to break even. We need to reconfigure this somehow to gain more density increment here.”

Once the completed plat receives final approval, the Department of Natural Resources-approved culvert and road crossing will be placed immediately said Leffler.

“We need both of those in right away to get the DNR out of the way,” he said. “Getting those two crossings approved was very important.”

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