Residents sound off against apartments
225-unit complex proposed in Germantown


March 24, 2015

GERMANTOWN — Nearly a dozen condo owners who live on Red Oak Circle and Windsor Drive do not want to be the neighbors of a proposed 225-unit apartment complex and told the village Plan Commission as much during a meeting of the plan commission Monday night.

The multi-family community, bearing the name Saxony Village, is being proposed by Scott Bence, agent for JBJ Development and Heritage Place Joint Venture. It would be built on 24 acres at N116 W16200 Main St., just south of the Park Avenue intersection.

Bence told the commissioners the development would feature five 45-unit three-story buildings and a 2,500-square-foot clubhouse with a pool. A pedestrian trail system would be created around the adjacent 8-acre wetland.

“We would also build a 24-stall parking lot for use by patrons of the Main Street businesses,” Bence said. “There would also be an onsite storm water basin that could be expanded for regional use.”

“I have been involved with this property since 1996. We’ve been patient but the time is right for this development,” Bence added. “We wanted to present this conceptual plan to get feedback from the village.”

“The downtown businesses have been asking for more parking. We think this development and the public parking lot could be the missing link for the downtown,” Bence said.

The target market for such a development is dual income young couples who may be just out of college but are not looking to purchase a house, Bence said, noting that an apartment community is also attractive to “empty-nesters and retired people who no longer want the work of keeping up a yard or a large home.

The community would offer a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom units, Bence said.

If approved by the village, Bence said construction would begin in 2016.

During the public input part of the meeting, Jerry Myszewski told the commissioners that “225 units is a very large number.”

“At rush hour in the morning and the evening, that many additional cars would create a safety concern,” Myszewski said. “Apartments have a transient population. I would prefer to see a development where people develop roots in the community.”

Bruce Warnimont, a member of the Germantown School Board, but said he was not speaking in an official capacity, told the commissioners that the impact on the school district should be taken into account when considering approving the development.

“We are over capacity. We bus students to Rockfield Elementary School, which has capacity issues of its own, because we have no space at MacArthur Elementary,” Warnimont said.

Village President Dean Wolter, who also serves as chairman of the Plan Commission, said the presentation of the concept plan for the complex was strictly for consultation purposes.

“They brought the plan forward for feedback from the plan commission and the public,” Wolter said of the proposed project’s developers.

Wolter told the nearly standing-room-only audience that the developers would take that input into consideration and come back before the commission at a later date with a more detailed plan.