Council holds public hearing on plan for Somerset Reserve subdivision


TROY —City council members heard concerns from several Troy residents during a public hearing for an ordinance to rezone 58.093 acres of property, located at 3054 W. State route 55, and approve a general plan for the Somerset Reserve subdivision.

“We have some major concerns,” Kensington Home Owners’ Association (HOA) president Dan DeCerbo, Sr. said during the public hearing. “Our major concern is the flow of traffic and how that’s going to be addressed; the other concern is the runoff.”

The public hearing was held during council members’ regularly scheduled meeting on Monday, Nov. 20. Under the ordinance, the property would be rezoned from county zoning of general agriculture to city zoning for planned residential development.

HOA members are also concerned about the safety of the current intersection of West State Route 55 and Nashville Road, DeCerbo said.

“With the design of the intersection there’s been several fatalities there,” he said. “With the residential people coming in, traffic is going to increase.”

“We were told in 2010, Nashville would be re-aligned so it intercepted 55 at a 90-degree angle,” HOA treasurer Steve Mascarella said. “We’re thirteen years past that, and that has not been taken care of.”

“The road problems need to be addressed before any subdivision turns a shovel,” he said.

Neighborhood resident Sara Kampfe also spoke to council regarding a recent speed survey that measured traffic on State route 55 approximately one-quarter mile from the Nashville Road intersection.

“I was actually a bit shocked,” Kampfe said. “I actually didn’t think there were that many cars that went by it.”

“A total of 16,838 vehicles went by that point; 67 percent of the people going past that point were above the speed limit of 50 miles per hour,” Kampfe said.

Joseph Graves, President of the Troy Chamber of Commerce and CEO of the Troy Development Council, also addressed council, speaking on the need for additional workforce housing throughout the county.

“I cannot speak on the proposed subdivision,” Graves said. “Affordable housing is needed in all of Miami County.”

“I still have the question of what size houses are actually going to be put here,” Kampfe said. “The HOA in this development is going to be responsible for maintenance on the streets. If we’re actually trying to make this an affordable housing community, you’re not doing it by making this a planned development in which everybody is going to have to pay for street repairs.”

DDC Management representative Kurt Ritter also spoke to council, addressing several of the concerns raised by residents.

“The intersection of Nashville Road and State route 55, obviously that is not ideal the way it is today,” Ritter said. “We’ve committed to re-aligning that to make it 90 degrees as part of Phase I.”

DDC Management also plans to widen the intersection later in the project, Ritter said.

“We’re willing to widen that whenever it needs to take place,” he said. “We’re also willing to provide the right-of-way for a future traffic signal or a roundabout in the future, whichever the city wants.”

Homes will be priced in the $325,000 price range, Ritter said. He also responded to concerns about runoff and flooding.

“We’re required to meet the stormwater regulations that the city has,” he said. “As part of the development putting in new roads, there will be new storm infrastructure; new pipe, inlets, grating and all of that will be then directed towards a detention basin; we’re showing two of those on the east side along Nashville.”

Following the public hearing, council members also heard the ordinance’s second reading; a third reading will be held at council members’ next regularly scheduled meeting.

“The community and economic development committee will talk about this next Monday at 6 p.m.,” council President William Lutz said.

In other business, council members also heard the first reading of an annual appropriation ordinance approving the city’s 2024 budget. The ordinance will be presented for a second reading on Monday, Dec. 4.

“This budget reflects the Mayor and council’s number one priority of economic development and a focus on quality of life and safety,” finance committee chairperson Todd Severt said. “.We know that a budget must be a working document, and we anticipate some appropriations during the year.”

Council members also approved ordinances to vacate an alley located between West Water Street and Washington Street and increase salaries of part-time and seasonal positions to reflect the impact of the January 1, 2024 adjustment in the Ohio minimum wage rate of $10.45 per hour, and adopted a resolution to extend the city’s agreement with the Miami Valley Communications Council (MVCC) for electric aggregation for city facilities.

Council members also voted to adopt resolutions approving 2024 funding for the Troy Development Council ($140,000), Troy Main Street ($60,000) and the Troy Recreation Association ($32,000).

Council also heard the first reading of two ordinances to rezone a portion of the Swank Annexation located at 2980 Fenner Road from county A-2, general agriculture, to city R-4, single-family residential, and another property located at 1304 W. Main St. from R-4, single-family residential, to OR-1 office-residential. Public hearings for both ordinances will be held on Monday, Dec. 4.

Council also heard an update on the West Main Street project from Director of Public Service and Safety Patrick Titterington, and several announcements from Troy Mayor Robin Oda.

“As we wrap up Phase I of West Main Street, we did open bids on Phase II,” Titterington said. “We’re still working out the contract; we had several very competitive bids.”

“We could start this winter,” he said. “It’s about a fifteen-month Phase II process; we would hope to be done with both phases by the first part of 2025.”

“This Friday is the tree lighting downtown,” Oda said. “The tree will not be lit before 7 p.m., but I would be there by 7 p.m. just to make sure you don’t miss it.”

“It is small shop weekend in downtown Troy,” she said. “There’s ice skating at the arena, there’s a concert at the APAC; it’s going to be another very busy weekend in the city of Troy.”

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