Lawrence City Commission to consider increasing density on 3.4-acre parcel of land for proposed infill project

photo by: City of Lawrence/BG Consultants

A concept plan shows a potential layout for a development at 1100 Kasold Drive.

City leaders will soon consider a request to increase the density of a 3.4-acre parcel of land to allow for duplexes to be built there instead of single-family homes.

As part of its meeting Tuesday, the Lawrence City Commission will consider approving a request to rezone approximately 3.4 acres located at 1100 Kasold Drive from a single-dwelling residential zoning district to a multi-dwelling residential district, or specifically from RS7 to RM12D. BG Consultants submitted the request on behalf of Christ Community Church, which owns the property and is located adjacent to it.

Residents from the bordering single-family neighborhood have filed a protest petition, citing traffic, parking and drainage concerns and the potential for the project to negatively affect their property values. Some said they preferred single-family homes or for the green space to instead be preserved. The protest petition requires the commission’s decision to be approved by a supermajority, or four out of five commissioners.

Planning department staff has recommended the request for approval, noting that it is an infill project and a goal of the comprehensive plan, Plan 2040, is to accommodate infill housing in appropriate locations and maximize development opportunities within the city’s boundaries. Planning staff cited five other relevant Plan 2040 goals, including the goal of incorporating a variety of housing types, densities and price ranges into neighborhoods. Ultimately, planning staff found that the request was “strongly in alignment” with Plan 2040.

“The density of the proposed development is somewhat higher than the immediately surrounding zoning, but not to the degree where the proposed development would be incompatible with the surrounding area,” the staff finding states in part. “This proposal is also in line with Plan 2040’s goal to provide a variety of housing options and to integrate such uses into established neighborhoods.”

Under RM12D, the maximum number of dwelling units allowed per acre is 12, meaning the 3.4-acre site could accommodate a maximum of 40 units, according to the planning department report. A concept plan, which would still need to be reviewed as part of a subsequent subdivision application, shows 12 lots and a potential cul-de-sac off of Kasold Drive. The report states that assuming each of the lots shown in the concept plan was developed with a duplex use, a total of 24 dwelling units would be added at the location, resulting in a density of approximately 8.82 dwelling units per acre.

The Planning Commission reviewed the request on Aug. 24 and voted 5-3 to recommend the request for approval.

The Lawrence City Commission will convene at 5:45 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall, 6 E. Sixth St.


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