Rochester planning commissioners on Monday, August 7, were open to hearing preliminary plans for a 140-unit apartment complex at Diversion Street, near 1st Street, near the northern shore of the Clinton River and along the Clinton River Trail.
Developer Anthony Randazzo of Auburn Hills-based Trowbridge Homes presented a conceptual site plan to commissioners. While official plans haven't yet been submitted to the city for consideration, Randazzo chose to present commissioners with the conceptual plans in order to get feedback on the proposed project.
"We want to build a first-class project," Randazzo said. "We feel the area lends itself to a multi-story building, as the topography drops down. It would be ideal to have a residential development there, as there isn't anything new there now. Most of what is there was built in the 1960s and 1970s, and it needs something fresh."
Plans for "Riverside Place" would allow for direct access to the trail and river area, and cater to young professionals and older empty nesters who are nearing retirement. He said spacious units would lease between $1,500 and $2,200 per month. Further, he said the company would own and manage the units, rather than choosing to resell them or have them managed by another company.
"We believe a multi-story development would do well there," Randazzo said. "It's tastefully designed, and we were attracted to the area by the trail and water."
Randazzo said the development would also require some environmental remediation of the soil in the proposed project area, which has had industrial uses in the past.
Rochester Economic Development Director Nik Banda said while there are environmental challenges in the area, the project would make an attractive residential area. He said a formal site plan is expected to be submitted to the city in mid-August, which would provide an opportunity for traffic and environmental impact studies.
Rochester Mayor Cathy Daldin, who sits on the planning commission, said she is concerned about the impact such a project would have on the trail area and nearby neighborhood.
"I would also like some input from the (Clinton River) trail commission," she said.
Planning commission chair David Watson also said the commission would be concerned about potential impacts, such as the impact on local roads, stormwater drainage and other concerns. "We are duty bound to look at various ramifications," he said.
City planning consultant Vidya Krishnan said the planning commission would also be looking for a market feasibility study and comprehensive traffic study....continued on page 2