City Council Quibbles with Apartment Developer

Representatives of Grapevine Texan Apartments appeared before the Grapevine City Council on Tuesday night to request a rezoning of roughly 12 acres near Mad Duck Cyclery off of Northwest Highway.  The apartment developers were also asking the Council to allow eleven building code variance requests.

The council practically in unison took exception to the relatively high number of variance requests.  They also questioned what “we” (we assume “we” refers to Grapevine here) get in return for all of these exceptions.

Questioning why there is a need for eleven variance requests seems rational.  That does seem like a lot.  Although, the only one of the eleven variance requests the Council poked holes in was a request to have one bedroom apartments sized below the required 750 square feet.  The developers request was to allow one bedroom apartments sized at 701 square feet which the Council previously approved at the Terrawood Apartments built over by Grapevine Mills Mall.

Having lived in apartments smaller than 701 square feet, we can assure everyone that this amount of square feet should not be an issue.  It is not as though the developers are attempting to put in some low rent dorm room type complex here.  These are intended to be upscale apartments including granite counter-tops and hardwood floors.

The other question seemed more odd to us and in fact rubbed us the wrong way.  “What do we get in return for all of these variance requests?”  What indeed.  How about you get construction on a new multi-million dollar apartment building that will bring jobs to the area. Once complete you get a beautiful, brand new living facility instead of an empty lot in an area of town that needs new buildings.  As an added bonus, you get well over 300 new residents who will bring their dollars to local retail stores, restaurants, gas stations, and grocers in an area of town that needs it.

What did you want in return?  A piece of pie?  Note:  the Council never communicated what they wanted in return.

This discussion was tabled for the March 15th City Council meeting and we cannot wait to see the outcome.

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3 Comments

  1. I have seen many posts related to this topic on the internet but I really found your post informative and up-to-the mark. I like the way how the writer has thrown light on unhidden facts. I am looking forward for the posts written by you in future!

  2. Just because motivated developers make an appealing pitch to council does not necessarily make this a good project for the area. With fairly limited open space left to develop in Grapevine the City is correct to proceed cautiously.

    Rather than looking at projects in a vacuum, perhaps Grapevine City Council members ought to take a big picture view of that part of Northwest Highway and come up with some design and development guidelines for the area.

    The span between the 9/11 Flight Crew Memorial and Main Street is utterly without charm or sense of place. Imagine the sense of arrival experienced by visitors heade to the Historic District who drive that stretch of road.

    How about a streetscape development plan of some sort?

    • Local Guy –

      I couldn’t agree more. It would be nice to see some sort of development plan not just for that stretch of land, but other open spaces as well along Northwest Hwy.

      Joe