Westfield-based Estridge Homes has plans to replace five houses near downtown Westfield with 24 town houses that would sell for between $350,000 and $400,000.
Estridge Homes, through 11th Street Development, has requested the city of Westfield rezone 1.26 acres along Poplar Street between Park and Jersey streets from the multi-family, low density zoning district to a planned unit development, which would call for single-family attached residential.
The project would be built about three blocks west of the intersection of Main and Union streets, the center of Westfield’s downtown, which is undergoing a major transformation.
As proposed, the 24 units would be spread across eight buildings.
The petitioners say the project represents a new phase of downtown redevelopment. Previously, much of the redevelopment took the form of adaptive reuse, but now the area is beginning to see new construction.
The Westfield-Washington Advisory Plan Commission voted 4-4 on the rezone request last week, meaning they’ll send the proposal to the Westfield City Council with no recommendation. The city council will have the final vote on the issue.
The proposal drew little negative feedback from the public, but some plan commission members were concerned about the project’s location. The property is identified in the city’s comprehensive plan as part of a quadrant that is intended to be the gateway to downtown. The comprehensive plan says the site is appropriate for hotels, conference centers, offices and multi-family housing with street-level retail.
The Grand Junction Task Group, which is helping lead efforts to redevelop Westfield’s downtown, felt the project should be built in a different location so it doesn’t hamper redevelopment of the rest of the area into what city officials envision.
But Julie Wright, owner of Greek’s Pizzeria, wrote to city officials that she supported the project because properties on the block are in poor condition. She feels the town home project would be much more fitting for Poplar Street than a hotel or parking garage.
The city council will vote on the rezone at an upcoming meeting. The council is tentatively scheduled to meet Oct. 28.