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Council votes down Phillips Point housing development

By Gus Pearcy

Platinum Properties were looking to purchase this 37-acres property for a planned development called Phillips Point. (Photos by Gus Pearcy)

The Brownsburg Town Council, in a split decision, voted against a planned development near West Northfield Drive and U.S. 136.

Developers were hoping for the council’s support for a zoning change and annexation of 37 acres at U.S. 136 and C.R. 625 E.

Phillips Point was planned as a 120-house subdivision to be developed by Platinum Properties and owner Paul Rioux. Near Northridge subdivision, Phillips Point was to have two- to four- bedroom single-family dwellings of 1,400 square feet to 1,900 square feet that cost $250,000-$300,000. The lots were between 5,750 to 8,000 square feet.

The land is currently under county jurisdiction. Platinum Properties would have sought voluntary annexation if the town had made a favorable recommendation to change the zoning from agriculture to a planned development.

The majority of the two hour and 45 minute council meeting was spent on this issue. Council president Brian Jessen allowed residents to speak specifically on the development after Platinum Properties explained the project.

The development would have created smaller houses on smaller lots that council member Chris Worley said was a trend he was seeing as a member of the Brownsburg Advisory Plan Commission. The market for these homes was young professionals and empty nesters.

The plan commission heard the plans over three meetings and had a split vote of 2-2, sending the plans to the council with no recommendation. The planning staff of Brownsburg had initial concerns about the technical aspects of street and cul-de-sac sizes, but once Platinum fixed those issues, gave a favorable recommendation to the council.

Carol Wright speaks against Phillips Point subdivision as a neighbor near the property at U.S. 136 and Northfield Drive West.

At least 10 residents from the surrounding area spoke against the development citing the density and increase in cars as at least two factors of concern.

Carol Wright told the council that she lived in Lincoln Township and can’t vote for town council.

“That makes me nervous,” she said.

Several residents who spoke said they expected a housing development to go there, but wanted something commensurate with the area of larger homes on larger lots.

Council member Ashley Bacsu agreed with the residents. She said she couldn’t afford a home like this and that if she was going to spend $300,000 on a home that she would expect a larger yard to mow.

Rioux spoke last and told the council that the subdivision would bring more than $3 million in tax revenues to the town and that the utilities were in front of the property. Brownsburg had previously pegged the Phillips farm as a desirable location for residential growth.

In the end, four council members voted to not consider changing the zoning for Phillips Point. Brownsburg will not annex the property either based on this development plan. This doesn’t preclude future developers from looking at this land.

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