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Housing proposal draws concerns

By Kimberly Jordan kjordan@lebanondemocrat.com • Dec 15, 2015 at 2:12 PM

Residents in the Mires Road area of Gladeville voiced concerns Wednesday about a proposed subdivision and its potential safety issues.

County Commissioner Clint Thomas, who represents that district, held a town hall meeting with the developer of the proposed Pine Creek Estates, which would have its entrance on Mires Road. Also present were County Planner Tom Brashear, county Stormwater Director John Dewaal and Jeff Joines, also a county commissioner and member of the Road Commission.

Pine Creek Estates developer Steve Ellsman was in town speaking with potential builders and attended the meeting to field questions from residents.

“Through our meetings we’ve brought up several important concerns,” said Thomas. “I think there has been a good faith effort to work with the neighbors, and I think the developer has a good grasp on our concerns.”

Ellsman said he wanted to be available to hear any concerns from those affected by the development. One resident said his main concern was flooding and drainage issues.

The preliminary plat for the estates was approved back in 2006, and Ellsman said there weren’t as many concerns then with the proposal.

“When the floods happened [in 2010], I was very interested in what happened to my property,” said Ellsman. “I asked what would have happened if the neighborhood had been built out, would the homes have flooded, and I was told no.”

The first phase of the Pine Creek Estates includes 30 homes, which Ellsman estimates to be 3,000-square-foot-plus.

“What we want to build is a neighborhood that is warm, that when you drive you say ‘wow, I want to live there,’” he said.

Several citizens expressed concerns over the safety issues on Mires Road by adding the additional traffic from all of the residents of the new homes. The road’s narrowness seemed to be the topic at odds for many of the attendees. Some asked why the road couldn’t be fixed before the new homes were built.

Joines told the community members that the Road Commission oversees more than 900 miles of roadway in the county. Of that 900 miles, he said 39 remain to be paved, which Joines said puts them at the top of the list for improvements.

“Hopefully, over the next couple of years we’ll have it all paved. We wanted to come here today to hear some of the concerns you have so that we will know. We want to help you. Come to the Road Commission and tell us what the concern is.”

Another resident mentioned how the road was too narrow in places and also had spots where water would run across the roadway if a decent rain came through the area.

Ellsman also encouraged the residents to express concerns to the Road Commission.

“There may be some temporary solutions,” he said. “If you talk to the Road Commission, that may help [the conditions] until there are more funds available for permanent fixes.”

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