On August 9, 2016, the Planning Commission Approved Nolensville Market Square. The following is the updated submission that addressed areas of interest, comments and clarifications presented to the Mayor, Chairman and members of the commission by Michael Hindman with H. Michael Hindman Architects representing Nolensville Market Square.
August 9, 2016
P L A N N I N G C O M M I S S I O N M E E T I N G
Nolensville Market Square
We are very pleased to, once again, present this exciting project for consideration by the Nolensville Planning Commission. We were in attendance at the July 12, 2016 Planning Commission meeting and witnessed comments regarding this project. The plans have now been revised to address all of those comments.
Comment 1 – Concern regarding height of four story buildings.
There was some discussion regarding the height of the buildings and, in particular, the visibility of the upper floors from public view. By this submittal, we have revised the plans to remove the top floor entirely from Buildings D and E, the buildings immediately behind Town Hall. The requested fourth floor is now limited to only Buildings B and C. In addition, we have increased setbacks on the sides and the rear of the fourth floor to a minimum of 10’-0” from the third floor parapet on the north, east and south sides. Along the western face of the building (fronting on the main street) this distance is 18-20’. As indicated on the previously submitted site section and by our onsite demonstrations, this upper level should have very limited visibility from the residential area to the east of the development. Multiple additional views of the project have been added to this package to better indicate the overall presence and the views from public roadways. (Sheet A4) Let me note that inclusion of this limited area of fourth floor is crucial to the design and overall success of the development. This small upper level will contain the most desirable, and yes, the most expensive residential units. With outside terraces surrounding the units, this level will be an amenity for the entire project.
Comment 2 – Concern regarding number of residential units.
The overall unit count has been reduced numerous times over the many months that this project has been discussed. Our very initial concept was to have a separate residential development with up to 350 units. Once we got into more serious planning, we had up 160 units. This plan submittal, by the elimination of the top floor from two buildings, the total count of proposed for-sale condos is now 84.
Comment 3 – Concern regarding retaining walls.
Although these are preliminary concept plans, our team has invested time in working out the site grading. We have, with this submittal, reduced the visual aspect the retaining walls specifically around the post office property. The wall is now incorporated with the base of building D. As the plans progress, we hope to make other modifications. Graphic examples of retaining wall design have also been included with this submittal. (Sheet A7) Pre-split walls, or exposed natural rock, may occur where practical from a geologic standpoint. In other locations, modular retaining walls would be built.
Comment 4 – Request to make the primary roadway compliant with Town road design.
The roadway design, as previously submitted, was actually very close to the Town standards. I did not realize that at the time. The drive lane widths and the pavement section were, and are, in accordance with the standards. The one item in question was the use of angled parking along the roadway, and we have heard different opinions from the Town staff regarding this parking.
These plans, as now submitted, have retained the angled parking. We have also included examples (on sheet A8) of angled parking used successfully in many other public spaces, including around the courthouse square in Murfreesboro.
We believe that the angled parking provides easier access as well as increased parking count. The angled parking is typically preferred by drivers. Respectfully, we request approval as planned.
Comment 5 – Concern regarding use of Town property and connection between Town Hall and development.
Specifically we heard concerns that the use of the town property has not been considered by the Board of Mayor and Aldermen and it was perceived by some as private use of the property. Additionally, there was the request to reduce the physical connection between the town property and the development. Therefore, it may be premature to include the development of that property at this time.
Consequently, the proposed development of site amenities on the Town Hall property has been removed from these plans and is not a part of our request at this time. We are indicating pedestrian access between the two properties.
Please understand that the enhancement of this public space was always an important part of our concept and our spirit of development of a community space remains. The extent of the improvements remain to be determined and yes, will be dependent upon the economics of the overall project. We will continue to work with the Town administration to finalize the design in this area.
Comment 6 – Concern regarding rentals of Condos
The proposed development consists only of for-sale condos. There are no proposed apartments within the development. Although by law we cannot prohibit leasing of the of what will be privately owned homes, we do propose to limit rentals of the condos to 25% of the overall count. This will be a part of the HOA bylaws as allowed by the Fair Housing Act. In order to deter investment purchases, we also propose to institute a one-year moratorium on renting after the purchase of a condo.
Our clients and our team are all very much committed to this project. However, we do want this development to be a very special place. We have no interest in a standard strip center or parceled development.
By this submittal, we believe that we have substantially addressed all of the primary concerns voiced by members of the Planning Commission. We respectfully request a recommendation of approval for this project to the Board of Mayor and Aldermen.