EdgeRock Development’s proposed $18 million Shamrock Apartments project in Westfield has been years in the making for some, and a completely new concept to others.
Westfield Advisory Plan Commission officials haven’t decided whether EdgeRock Development’s request to rezone property at 17655 Shamrock Blvd. for a future four-story apartment and retail building honors the zoning standards approved in 2014 for the site north of Main Street and U.S. 31, near Riverview Health Westfield Hospital and Westfield Intermediate School.
Some members saw current plans for the roughly 100-unit apartment building with 30,000 square feet of retail space as a departure from the zoning previously approved for senior apartments.
“We were looking for intergenerational stuff for our downtown, and I think at least part of it having something designated for our seniors was advantageous,” commission member Cindy Spoljaric said. “It’s not just age. There are traffic components, there are workers involved.”
Birch Dalton, managing director of the Westfield-based development company, said during Wednesday’s meeting that the only change he’s seeking is to increase the project’s height from three stories to four.
“The multifamily aspect was asked, answered and voted on years ago. It was already [approved for] apartments,” Dalton said. “With the change in the marketplace, we want to make it senior living apartments and workforce (apartments). In other words, anybody could live there.”
Dalton will need the city’s approval before he can start building the mix of studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments in summer 2021. He expects the construction of those market-rate senior and workforce housing units will be completed in a year to 16 months after approval.
As for the ground-floor commercial space, Dalton is envisioning a lineup of salons, banks, cafes or restaurants that will cater directly to residents, the nearby elementary, intermediate and high schools and Riverview Hospital.
The proposal has received opposition from some Westfield residents who are opposed to any project that could create substantially more traffic in an already-busy area. They also say a fourth story on the building would be out-of-place for the area.
The commission is scheduled to vote on the project at a later date. Members asked Dalton to come up with a solution in the meantime for the increased traffic the project would bring to the roundabout south of the property.
Dalton said he’s spoken with adjacent property owners and they are planning to donate their land so Shamrock Boulevard can accommodate the increased traffic created by the project.
“I’m not going to build something for $15 million or $18 million that doesn’t have good traffic,” Dalton said. “I want to solve that before I commit to putting the money in.”