WESTBROOK — The proposed Twin Falls Landing subdivision is expected to have a public hearing in January.
The 38-lot housing development, which will also have commercial properties, is being proposed at 500 Spring St. The Planning Board discussed the project in a workshop meeting on Nov. 21.
The development, if approved, will be built on the site of the former Twin Falls Golf Course, which closed last year. The 2,700-yard, nine-hole course opened on Spring Street in 1970. The Planning Board is scheduled to do a site walk of the property on Dec. 9 at 10 a.m.
Jim Howard, the president and CEO of Priority Real Estate and owner of Westbrook Housing Group LLC, purchased the land last year. According to city assessing information, the property, which is zoned residential, is 69.3 acres and is valued at $934,900.
Howard said despite buying the property a year ago, he hadn’t gone to the Planning Board until now because he understands the concerns Westbrook residents have about development. On either side of the proposed development are the Blue Spruce Farm subdivision and the 95-unit Stroudwater Lodge senior living facility. Howard said he has gone to a number of Planning Board meetings over the past year to get a sense of how people in the city are reacting to development. The developers also held a neighborhood meeting on Oct. 12 to get input on the project.
The project is being designed and engineered by Sebago Technics, with Shawn Frank as the senior project manager. The proposal includes the development of 38 one-acre residential lots and two roadways. The property has the potential to be developed into 160 residential lots, Howard said, but there is no intention to do that at this time.
There would also be two or three commercial lots facing Spring Street, which Howard said would be used as offices for dentists or doctors, or for a market. The houses would be located behind the commercial properties.
The residential lots would each be sold to individual builders, Howard said. He said he wants there to be variation in the appearance and style of each home and that he expects each home to sell for $450,000-$650,000.
A resident on Nov. 21 spoke in favor of the project at the Planning Board workshop. John Leahy, a real estate broker, said he’s glad the city isn’t getting another development similar to the Blue Spruce subdivision.
“They’re really trying to elevate what a residential neighborhood in Westbrook could be and I hope they’re successful,” he said. “I hope these six- to seven- hundred-thousand-dollar homes do sell and we have these new families come here. I think it’s a real game changer.”
The property also includes a 14-acre conservation easement, which has been held since 1997. Frank on Nov. 21 said the developers had a meeting scheduled for Nov. 30 with the Presumpscot Regional Land Trust to discuss this further. The Planning Board said the developers will also need to present its plan to the Recreation and Conservation Commission.
Frank, who led the presentation Nov. 21, said the developers will be submitting an application for the project to the Department of Environmental Protection in December. He said he expects they’ll submit the final subdivision application to the city in January. Howard in October said he hopes to start building the roads in the subdivision by the spring.
By the time the developers come back before the Planning Board, the board said it wants more information on a few aspects of the project, including the conservation easement. It also wants to see plans for “colorful trees” and other landscaping along Spring Street as well as plans for lighting and signage. The board also wants more details about a sidewalk system within the development and along Spring Street and a crosswalk in front of the development’s entrance.
Kate Gardner can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter: @katevgardner.
The developers of the proposed Twin Falls Landing subdivision on Spring Street expect to go before the Planning Board for a public hearing in January.
A 38-lot housing subdivision with two or three commercial properties is being proposed at Twin Falls Golf Club on Spring Street in Westbrook.