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Proposed Bopp property subdivision to have public hearings in October

By: Brian Flinchpaugh


A tract of land known at the Bopp property in Dardenne Prairie

A large portion of what are now soybean fields north of Feise Road and west of Bryan Road could become a new residential development of 266 single-family homes.

The Cora Bopp Family Limited Partnership has filed an application with Dardenne Prairie seeking to rezone 107 acres to residential planned unit development for the homes.  The property is now zoned commercial.

The new subdivision would be named “Inverness.” Its builders are McKelvey Homes, Lombardo and Payne Family Homes.

The tract is part of 176 acres owned by the partnership that is zoned commercial and residential. The tract previously was known as the possible location of a Walmart Neighborhood Market near the corner of Feise and Bryan. After months of back and forth discussions and plan modifications, Walmart backed away from its plans to build the grocery store.

The layout and other details for the subdivision were shared at a public meeting on Sept. 20 at Crossroads Elementary School. Plans call for extensive bicycle and walking trails, winding streets and cul-de-sacs, said Mayor David Zucker in his “Shine a Light” column on the city’s website.

“The design is innovative and intended to create a sense of spaciousness,” Zucker said. Access to the subdivision will be from Feise Road. Its streets will not connect to Devon Drive in the Bainbridge subdivision or to Little Big Horn, Reece or Christine in O’Fallon.

Houses will range in size from 1,600 square feet to more than 4,000 square feet and are expected to sell from about $300,000 to about $700,000.

Zucker said public hearings on the rezoning and development will be conducted before the city’s planning and zoning commission on Oct. 10 and before the Board of Aldermen on Oct. 17. Both hearings will begin at 7 p.m. and will be held at City Hall, 2032 Hanley Road.

The subdivision is not the only recent proposal involving the Bopp property that has come before the city. In June, the city of Dardenne Prairie received a rezoning and planned unit development request for approximately 68.4 acres at 1575 Bryan Road, located in the northwest corner of the intersection of Feise and Bryan roads. But that request is being withdrawn.

To allow future development of a portion of the tract requires curb cuts off Bryan Road that would allow an entrance and a roadway on the property, according to Zucker and Gary Feder, an attorney for the Bopp Family Limited Partnership.

Feise Road is in Dardenne Prairie. The Bryan Road right-of-way is controlled by O’Fallon.  Each city controls road access off their roads.

Zucker said earlier this year that if there had not had been so much difficulty getting access to Bryan Road, the  Walmart store might be under construction. However, Feder said changes in leadership at Walmart and Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods, as well as the lack of curb cuts off Bryan Road may have been Walmart’s deciding factors.

Regarding talks between the two cities and partnership, Zucker said, “If you hear something give me a call, the line went dead last year.”

Tom Drabelle, communication’s director for O’Fallon, anticipates that talks will resume, especially as the city considers new commercial development plans that may involve 20 to 30 acres and require an access road off Bryan Road.

O’Fallon’s position has concerns that the development may require new traffic signalization and widening of Bryan Road; however, Feder said the developers did provide a detailed traffic study last year that addressed those questions.

One concern now is to develop the updated plans for the property and show O’Fallon that approvals by Dardenne Prairie have been made. City officials are hopeful that new commercial development may add needed sales tax revenue to Dardenne Prairie’s coffers.

“It’s too nice a parcel to lie in soybeans and corn forever. I do expect it to be developed,” Zucker said.

 

 

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