Archive for Saturday, June 14, 2003

Sixth St. and SLT pegged as latest ‘gateway’

Intersection plan would feature wide variety of development styles

June 14, 2003


The next gateway into Lawrence -- the area around the intersection of Sixth Street and the South Lawrence Trafficway -- would include a broad range of land uses under a plan unveiled Friday by city planners.

And it would allow the sort of development proposed late last year that prompted creation of the guidelines.

Brian Kubota, whose proposed development at the corner has been on hold while the city created its plan, expressed frustration over the delay.

"I've lost a whole season," he said. "If I'd had it approved when I went into the commission, I'd have had it engineered and would be letting contracts."

Planner Bryan Dyer said the plan would give the city a gateway of which it could be proud. "We want to put a good image forward of what the city is," he said.

The 640 acres surrounding the intersection would display a diversity of land uses:

  • The northwest corner is slated for office, industrial and warehouse uses.
  • The northeast corner would mix homes, stores and offices.
  • The southeast corner would be similar to the northeast, splitting the land between residential, commercial and office uses.
  • The southwest corner would include offices, research/industrial buildings and warehouses.

Dyer said the plan was based on Horizon 2020, the city-county long-range development guide, and other city long-range plans.

Kubota's proposal to develop the intersection's 67-acre southeast corner was delayed by the Lawrence City Commission in November when it ordered creation of the plan. He said Friday the plan's vision of the southeast corner was similar to what he offered.

"It basically verifies that our plan complies, to a T, with Horizon 2020," Kubota said. "I'm not surprised that we're in general compliance with the plan."

Dyer said there was a difference between the plan and Kubota's proposal. The city's plan envisions office buildings at the tract's extreme northeast corner. Kubota said office uses should go a little farther southeast.

"I can't have traffic going through an office area into a commercial area," Kubota said.

A Wichita developer has proposed using the northeast corner for commercial and light-industrial uses.

Officials have said they expected the west corners of the intersection to take longer to develop.

"We didn't put a timeline on there," Dyer said. "The big issue of the west side is when the city can provide services to that area, and when the owners want to develop."

The first question, he said, should be answered by completion of a citywide wastewater management master plan this summer.

As for Kubota, he said he's hoping the city will let him get on with business.

"I hope that the City Commission would look at it and say, 'OK, you're in compliance with Horizon 2020, the nodal plan and the transportation plan,' so we can proceed with this."

City Manager Mike Wildgen said the City Commission would consider the development plan for the intersection in July.

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