Monday, December 2, 2013

Palisades Passes a Test

The proposed Palisades Village development (a pedestrian-oriented, mixed-use development on the west side of Central Expressway across from Galatyn Park DART station) passed a key test, getting a 7-0 recommendation for approval from the Richardson City Plan Commission (CPC). I've expressed my support for this development before.

After the jump, the latest incarnation of the developer's proposal and the additional conditions imposed by the CPC.

The biggest objection to the development came from the adjoining neighborhoods, who are opposed to apartments. The developer reduced the request to a maximum of 600 multi-family units, down from 750.

The neighbors who opposed the apartments focused on the impact on the nearby Prairie Creek Elementary School in the Richardson ISD. The new proposal from the developer would have prohibited multi-family units within Dallas County (RISD). The CPC changed that by imposing a condition that no more than 40% of the multi-family units be in Dallas County.

My own wishlist includes a pedestrian bridge across Central Expressway to the DART station at Galatyn. The developer will dedicate a landing area for that bridge in Palisades Village, but funding and construction of the bridge itself is left to the city and state. In other words, it's likely to remain a wishlist item.

With the approval by the CPC, the proposal now goes before the City Council. The council has demonstrated in the past its ability to ignore what the CPC recommends, for or against a request, sometimes without showing much curiosity about why the CPC made the recommendations it did, so there's no telling what the council will decide in this case. Expect them to focus on the number of multi-family units, the quality of construction, and the distribution of units between RISD and PISD.

Mayor Laura Maczka has made known her enthusiasm for this Palisades development. Getting it passed over the vocal opposition of some Canyon Creek homeowners is a test of her leadership. In the end, expect it to pass.

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