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Trail Ridge work gets go-ahead from City Council

Tuesday, October 4, 2005 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 6:13 a.m. CDT, Sunday, June 29, 2008

The final phase of the Trail Ridge subdivision in south Columbia will go ahead as planned despite concerns from neighbors who say the development is ruining their property.

Construction can also begin on the sprawling Old Hawthorne subdivision east of town after a unanimous vote by the City Council late Monday night.

The council, having already approved initial plans for the Trail Ridge site north of Green Meadows Road and west of Greenbriar Drive, had no power to reject a plan to add an additional 15.5 acres as long as it was in accordance with the original plan, argued Dan Simon, a lawyer representing developer Don Stohldrier.

“The fact of the matter is, you have no discretion to reject this plan,” Simon told the council.

Plans call for the addition of single-family homes on 62 lots. The first developer, Bill Eckhoff, had sought to build houses and condominiums. After protests from neighbors, Eckhoff submitted a plan in 2004 for houses only.

Don Stohldrier bought the land later in the year. As he was about to submit a new plan for the site allowing four homes per acre, the Greenbriar-Trail Ridge Neighborhood asked the city to pass an ordinance requiring no more than three homes per acre in the area. With no support for the ordinance in the City Council, the neighborhood association withdrew its request.

Some residents who live downstream from the proposed development asked Monday that the plan be denied because preliminary work at the site is causing water damage and erosion to their property.

Traci Wilson-Kleekamp, spokeswoman for the Greenbriar-Trail Ridge Neighborhood Association, said runoff from the development ruined the landscaping in her neighbor’s yard, which she said now looks like “a huge mud pile.” She said she is not trying to stop the development, but wants her voice heard to ensure that the plan is done well and done right.

“I’m concerned that staff is overworked and doesn’t have the staff to go out there and see what’s going on,” Wilson-Kleekamp said.

Director of Public Works John Glascock said in an e-mail that an erosion-control plan for the site has been approved by both the city and the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. The regulations refer to the final development only, not the intermediate stages when building is under way, he said.

“The intermediate steps from the beginning to final grading is not a part of that submission because you would need a plan for each day,” he said.

In other business, the council:

  • Approved the preliminary development plan for the Old Hawthorne subdivision, located on 631 acres along Route WW that Billy Sapp had annexed over the summer.
  • The plan calls for 370 single-family homes, 625 townhouses, 30 acres of commercial development and a golf course. The developers also donated 18 acres to the city for a public park.
  • Approved the voluntary annexation of 12 homes in the Maple Bluff subdivision. Residents requested the annexation to receive access to the city’s sewer system.
  • Approved the acquisition of property so that a 36-inch water main from the McBaine water treatment facility to Scott Boulevard can be constructed.

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