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Town of Delavan development moves forward

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Catherine W. Idzerda
February 19, 2014

TOWN OF DELAVAN--After more than a decade of discussion and dispute, a residential development in the town of Delavan might finally be moving forward.

The town board on Tuesday approved the rezoning and conditional use permits necessary for the Sho-Deen Group's plan to build more than 600 homes on an estimated 285 acres. The land is located northwest of the Delavan Lake Inlet and is at the corner of County F and Mound Road.

There was no discussion among board members, and no one in the audience spoke in favor or against the development plan.

The move comes less than a week after the District 3 Court of Appeals ruled the city of Delavan could not impose density limits on a proposed residential subdivision in the town.

In July 2012, the Delavan City Council exercised its extraterritorial rights and denied a rezoning request for 74 lots on a 36-acre tract called Mound Road Estates. A city's extraterritorial rights extend 1.5 miles outside its limits.

The Lake Delavan Property Co., a division of the Sho-Deen Group, sued, and Walworth County Circuit Judge John Carlson found in favor of the company.

In its arguments, the Delavan City Council cited its land division policy, which restricted density in its extraterritorial jurisdiction to 35 acres per lot, with an exemption under some conditions for one-acre lots. The city updated its land division policy in 2011.

In its ruling, the appeals court concluded the city can exercise some control on land outside its borders, but it cannot reject a zoning request based on land use. Zoning must be done by a committee representing the city and each of the affected neighboring towns, the court ruled. 

On Tuesday, the town board considered three requests related to the development:

--A request to rezone 22.36 acres from R2 to R5A. R2 is single-family residential without sewers. R5A is a planned development with all types of housing and supporting commercial services. R5A also requires 20 percent open space and the preservation of woods, steep lands and wetlands.

--A request tor rezone 14.19 acres from R2 to R3. R3 allows both one-family and two-family residents.

-A request for a conditional-use permit for a conservation development on 247 acres that will include 399 single-family, 160 multifamily and 64 duplex units.

The board's approval was subject to 12 conditions, many of them pertaining to stormwater run-off.  Provisions include: 

--Connection of all lots to the sanitary sewer system.

--Provide a stormwater drainage system from the very start of construction to keep run-off away from an existing subdivision.

--Wells must be drilled at least 60 feet as recommended by a previous groundwater and water supply study.

 --The number of residential units can not exceed 623.

--A traffic light must be put in at the intersection of Mound Road and County F.

The plan for the development still must go through the Walworth County Planning Committee, said Dave Patzelt, Sho-Deen Group president.

The area has been designated "urban density residential" in long-range plans by the county and the town. Plans call for less than 5 acres per dwelling.

Patzelt then must return before the town board to get approval for the final plan, which will include all details and engineering specifications.



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