A developer who wants to build 16 apartments at the northwest corner of Green Meadows Road and Green Meadows Circle in south Columbia will take his case for rezoning to the Columbia City Council on Monday night.

Matt Kelly of West Rock II is proposing the development, which would be known as The Godfrey. His request to rezone the 1.5-acre property from R-1, single family residential, to PD, planned development, might face an uphill battle after the Columbia Planning and Zoning Commission voted 8-0 in August to recommend the council deny his request.

West Rock’s plan proposes four four-plex apartment buildings. Each of the apartments would have two bedrooms, and there would be 37 parking spaces.

Kelly told the planning commission that he hopes to develop high-quality, affordable apartments that people would view as desirable as single-family homes. His target tenants would be young professionals and senior residents, he said.

City planner Rusty Palmer has said in a staff report on the request that reducing the proposed development to 12 apartments would be more appropriate for the site, which is one of the last remaining vacant properties in the Green Meadows area.

The staff also suggested West Rock’s plan puts the apartments too close to the street, and it disliked the fact that some of the apartments’ entrances would not face the street. Overall, it felt the development was out of character for the surrounding area.

The property is bordered by Rock Bridge Christian Church and single-family neighborhoods.

Commissioners at their August meeting followed the staff’s recommendation against the rezoning. They were unhappy the backs of the apartment buildings would face surrounding neighborhoods and said the plan lacked imagination. They also worried about the impact on traffic and were skeptical the apartments could be truly classified as affordable.

The request is the only public hearing on the council’s agenda. In other business, the council will:

Hear another Health Department update on the status of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Consider whether to establish a Growth Impact Study Working Group that would assist a consultant with determining the impact of development on city resources.

Hear a report from the Police Department about a proposed ordinance prohibiting police from using neck restraints, including chokeholds and carotid restraints intended to control a person’s movement or render them unconscious. Fourth Ward Councilman Ian Thomas requested the bill. The report to the council says it should consider carefully whether such restraints should be allowed in situations where the use of deadly force is warranted.

  • Discuss during a pre-meeting work session plans for seeking an extension of a one-eighth-cent parks sales tax and other options for raising sales or property taxes through ballot measures in 2021.
  • I've been a reporter and editor at Missouri community newspapers for 35 years and joined the Columbia Missourian in 2003. My emphasis at the Missourian is on local government and elections. You can reach me at swaffords@missouri.edu or at 573-884-5366.

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