If developer Jim Combs gets his way, upscale rental apartments will be ready
for occupancy in May at the Village in Burns Harbor subdivision.
The town’s Advisory Plan Commission voted 5-0 Monday to conduct a public
hearing Aug. 1 to amend the Village’s primary plat by swapping nine
single-family lots north and south of an extended Boo Road for apartment
Representing the Village, Jeff Ban of DVG Inc. said they hope to have
paperwork in order Aug. 1 so they can request secondary/final plat approval
as well that night if the primary plat is amended as requested.
After the meeting the CEO of L. I. Combs & Sons of Valparaiso, said, “We’d
like to get started as soon as possible, hopefully September.” According to
the company’s website it has built over 950 apartment units.
Combs said he is working on the Burns Harbor project with Mike Sakich of In
Good Company, a partner in The Enclave apartments on Dickinson Road in
Combs said the manor homes planned for the Village will range from an
approximately 650 square-foot, one-bedroom unit to a 1,300 square-foot,
three-bedroom model. “They’re going to be the top of the line.”
Seventy to 80 apartments in two-story buildings will be the project’s first
phase; the revised plat shows a total 24 buildings of up to eight units each
as well as a pool and clubhouse.
The apartments would be built in the north and east portions of the Village
property, located west of Indiana 149 and north of U.S. 20. As of December,
2010 at least 75 single-family homes had been built in the subdivision
characterized by smaller lots, front porches and narrow streets to enhance
the 1950’s-era neighborhood feel.
Some of the same questions posed when the Village primary plat last was
amended in December arose again Monday including future construction of a
relocated Boo Road through the subdivision and eventually connecting to the
Harbor Trails subdivision to the west.
Ban was asked why it appears Boo Road on the east side of Village goes
through a parking lot for the apartment buildings; Ban said the plan will be
changed so Boo Road looks and acts as a road.
Hesham Khalil of town engineer Global Engineering and Land Surveying said he
and town building commissioner Bill Arney are reviewing Ban’s plans and hope
to have a report soon with more information about Boo Road construction.
On another matter, Arney was thanked for securing the reluctant cooperation
of Wells Fargo to remove large piles of broken concrete from the former
Standard Plaza truck stop on U.S. 20 following environmental testing there;
the bank is responsible for the property.
Commission members Toni Biancardi and Jan Hines were absent.
gets new life
In a related zoning matter, the legal action has been revived seeking to
overturn last year’s split Burns Harbor Board of Zoning Appeals decision
allowing C.R. England trucking to build a new 250 semi-truck parking lot
with guardhouses south of Tech Drive west of Indiana 149.
Late last month twelve Burns Harbor individuals and businesses asked Porter
Superior Court judge Mary Harper to order the BZA to turn over its record of
the England petition proceedings for court review.
England attorney Terry Hiestand responded that Jan. 3, 2011 when Harper
dismissed the Town of Burns Harbor and its Town Council as co-plaintiffs in
the appeal because they lacked legal standing, the remaining 12 should have
been dismissed, too.
Thomas Mixdorf of Ice Miller LLP of Indianapolis represents the twelve
individuals/businesses still appealing; Mixdorf represented the Town and
Town Council as well previously.
Because the town’s law firm of Harris, Welsh & Lukmann represented both the
Town Council and the BZA, HWL recused itself from anything to do with the
England appeal. Attorney Brian Hurley was hired to advise the BZA.
Last night, HWL attorney Charles Parkinson said even though the Town/Town
Council have been dismissed, his firm can’t represent the BZA again because
future litigation still might involve the Town/Town Council related to the
In his current filing Mixdorf said his clients’ renewed request to produce
the BZA record, made almost six months after the Town/Town Council were
dismissed, is “merely a reminder of its original timely petition for review
of the BZA’s decision.”
The remaining plaintiffs are Herminio and Andrea Soto; Steelworkers Hall
Inc.; BH, LLC and Tara BH Village LLC, both tied to the Village in Burns
Harbor subdivision; Lake Shore Domestics Inc. and Lake Shore Imports Inc.
represented by auto dealer Robert Kerr; Arnell Chevrolet Inc. and related
dealerships; Camp Land Inc., JPAD Development and JPAD Properties LLC; and
Fast Coffee Services.