This is concerning the proposed Highway 59 North Lightburne duplex development zoning change
Since 1967, my mother has lived on North Lightburne Street, a predominantly middle-class, Hispanic neighborhood consisting of 42 single-family homes. The large vacant tract of land behind North Lightburne Street is currently zoned commercial (along Highway 59 West) and R-1 (single-family) adjacent to the homes located to the west of North Lightburne Street, part of the Casa Bonita subdivision. This site is now the subject of a proposed mixed-duplex and single-family development by The Apple Company of Texas Realty Group, LLC. A zoning request to change all of the property to an R-3 (multi-family) designation will be considered by the City Planning and Zoning Commission on July 3, 2013.
After considering potential construction of a 42 duplex (84 housing unit) development with no single-family homes, developer Bobby Apple has agreed, subject to obtaining his zoning change request, to build a mixed development consisting of a maximum of 32 duplexes (64 housing units) near the front of the development along Highway 59 West and a minimum of 10 single-family homes toward the back of the development, with North Lightburne Street remaining a dead-end street closed to everyday traffic with a locked access gate between Flores Street (off of North Lightburne Street) and new Amistad Street, accessible solely to emergency first responders. The proposed development would have no low-income housing component.
Mr. Apple’s plan is to initially build 10 duplexes and 10 single-family homes in order to gauge the community’s needs and determine how to proceed with the remainder of his development. His proposed plan promises to be a quality development consisting of brick duplexes and single-family homes, landscaping, wooden fences, drainage improvements and a new paved street (Amistad Street). These units would be offered for sale and lease. The Beeville Planning and Zoning Commission and, ultimately, the Beeville City Council, should approve the zoning change request to permit construction of Mr. Apple’s mixed duplex (32 maximum) and single-family (10 minimum) development.
This development is significantly better for the North Lightburne Street neighborhood than an ill-conceived development proposed approximately five years ago by a different property owner and developer to build a massive Section 8 low-income housing apartment complex on this tract of land, including connecting North Lightburne Street with that development which would have brought a large and overwhelming influx of people, traffic and noise to that quiet neighborhood.
Mr. Apple’s mixed duplex and single-family home development is a good compromise balancing the interests of the North Lightburne Street neighborhood with Beeville’s overall need for new quality housing needed to attract new industry.
A properly designed mixed duplex and single-family home development, with North Lightburne remaining a dead-end street and with a no low-income housing component, is a “win win” for that neighborhood and all of Beeville.
Jerry G. Sanchez