LJWorld.com weblogs Town Talk

Another residential development files plans for area near recreation center, Rock Chalk Park


The area around the proposed Lawrence recreation center and Rock Chalk Park site continues to heat up.

Lawrence developer Tim Stultz has filed plans at City Hall for a 40-acre development of single-family homes and apartments south and east of the recreation center site.

The plan is seeking rezoning for the area at the northwest corner of Queens Road and Overland Drive. The request seeks to create 15.89 acres of RM-12 apartment zoning, 21.54 acres of traditional RS-7 single family zoning, and 3.34 acres of small-lot RS-5 single family zoning.

Based on the preliminary plans, it looks like there will be the potential for about 80 to 85 single-family homes in the area. The plans aren’t yet detailed enough to indicate how many apartments may be a part of the project. But the plans do indicate that the development really wants to integrate the single family homes with the apartment development. Specifically, the plans talk about how the apartment complex will have its own clubhouse and swimming pool, and how that facility will be available to the single-family residents on a membership basis.

That’s not an unheard-of concept, but it is a bit new for Lawrence. It will be interesting to see if that may be a model for creating a more harmonious relationship between apartments and single-family development.

What will be particularly interesting to watch, however, is how quickly the area around the recreation center and Rock Chalk Park begins to fill up with new homes and apartments.

Obviously, the recreation center has brought out a lot of emotions on both sides of the fence, but the area really does have some elements to be a dynamic residential neighborhood. Homes within this area will be within walking distance of indoor basketball courts, a fitness center, an indoor turf field, a walking/jogging track, outdoor tennis courts, and about five miles of walking trails through the Rock Chalk Park area. That’s in addition to the various stadiums at the Rock Chalk Park site, which probably won’t be open for use by the public but will attract multiple spectator events. And time will tell whether the Rock Chalk Park facilities become venues for non-KU events, such as barbecue festivals, community runs and other celebrations.

But that is just one element of the area. If you are willing to lace your walking shoes up a little tighter, you can walk to an indoor pool as well. The city’s Indoor Aquatic Center is down the hill near Wakarusa and Overland drives. (It is about a mile, so you’ll need to lace them up tight. And notice my great sales skills: I mention down the hill but don’t mention the uphill trip on the way back.)

But maybe the most unique aspect for the area will be golf. The Links development — about 630 apartments that will surround a nine-hole golf course — certainly is within walking distance. As we previously have reported, it basically will be just east of the recreation center and Rock Chalk Park site. The Arkansas-based developers say they are going to start the project this year, but they have had timetables in the past that haven’t come to fruition. So, we’ll see.

The Links' development group, though, is further along than they have been. Hugh Jarrett, a spokesman for the group, shared details with me about the company's golf plans for the community. He said the nine-hole course will be open for public play, both on a membership basis and on a daily greens fee type of basis. He didn’t release any details about how much it would cost to play a round there. People who rent apartments at the complex will be able to play unlimited golf at the course with no green fees.

Based on plans filed at City Hall, the course will be more than a standard par 3 executive course. It won’t be as expansive as the city’s Eagle Bend course, but depending on its pricing, it certainly could be a competitor.

Here’s what the plans show for the course’s layout: Hole No. 1, 333 yards; No. 2, 254 yards, plays partially over about a half-acre lake; No. 3, 100 yards; No. 4, 250 yards, plays over a portion of what looks to be an approximately 3-acre lake; No. 5, 487 yards, plays over a portion of the same lake; No. 6, 112 yards, plays through a narrow alley of trees; No. 7, 487 yards; No. 8, 123 yards; and No. 9, 333 yards.

I’m sure I’ll hit a few balls out there some day. Fair warning: If you happen to be walking to the Indoor Aquatic Center that day, you may want to wear a helmet.


CalitoNY 5 years ago

Does Lawrence really want this whole town to turn into apartment living? Just take a look around.....that's all you see!! I just don't understand how property owners could possibly agree to watching more and more apts. being built. Our homes are going to go down in value folks....maybe the realtors could take a stand and save Lawrence!!

Jayhawker07 5 years ago

Really? As I have said, what Timmy wants Timmy gets. Yadda, yadda, yadda.

George_Braziller 5 years ago

I think that entire far west section should just split off and become it's own town. It could be called "Johnson County East" or "Anywhere Estates." It's so bland and sterile I'm never sure if I'm still in Lawrence when I drive through the area.

Thomas Bryce Jr. 5 years ago

There are " For Sale" and "For Rent" signs every where I look. The last Census Report showed Lawrence, KS. Population Growth is Essentially Flat. Where are all the Occupants for these New Dwellings going to come from? Some will move to the Newer from Older.That is just a shift. Where are the New Occupants for the New Developments coming from? Will vacancies in older areas increase? Probably. Then What do you have? More of what we don't need .More Older, vacant apartments or homes.

JayhawkFan1985 5 years ago

Maybe people will flee from Topeka...

jhawk1998 5 years ago

we need more commercial development before more residential housing is added

roadwarrior 5 years ago

lawrence development reminds me of how my crown vetch grows...new growth that leaves old growth dead behind it. After the housing bubble burst all that was left to build was spec apt's. Wait for it, the conditions for a rental housing burst is well underway and its eventuality is being planned for even as we speak.

Leslie Swearingen 5 years ago

Chad, could you give us a chart showing the cost of living in different parts of Lawrence, North, South, East, West?

The folks in the West must be uber athletic and have uber bucks because I don't think living next to a lake, golf course, club house, etc. is going to come cheap.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.