By James Jordan
Three developers are interested in building apartment complexes in Wellington. The City Council gave its approval to two of them at its meeting this week, and the third has already received the city's nod. None of the programs are a sure thing, and city officials think probably only one or two will actually come to fruition.
Both developers were at the meeting Tuesday and talked about their developments.
Having three interested in developments led city councilman Vince Wetta to wonder why.
"I just wonder what they know that we don't," he said.
Developers say they see a market, and believe growth is possible in the area.
The two developments that were discussed Tuesday are dependent on them getting state tax credits. That is a competitive process, and neither of them may receive the credits. They will find out in a month or two, and then will have to come back before the commission to get rezoning and final approval.
One is to convert the old junior high school into apartments, which received unanimous support. This developer applied for the credits last year and did not get approval and the deal fell through at that time. He is trying again, and if successful, would buy the property from the school district.
The other apartment complex proposal is in the old Settlers Creek subdivision, and this one did not get unanimous approval.
This development was one started several years ago, and the developer ended up going broke and leaving town. The city now owns the lots and is trying to market them, mostly as single-family dwellings.
Five property owners who have houses in the subdivision appeared at the meeting and opposed the apartment complex. They said they were sold the lots with the idea that this would be a community of single family dwellings. The believe an apartment complex will lower their property values and will change the dynamics of the neighborhood.
Councilmen John Tracy and Jim Valentine voted against this proposal. Valentine noted the people living there had not been notified in a timely manner. They received notification only a week or so ago. Tracy said he was on the commission when it approved the original development, and was there as the city went through the process of having to take it over.
"Ive heard developers say they were sure it would work," he said.