Planning commission approves building apartment complex

Amanda Garrett

The Kent City Planning Commission approved the building of an apartment complex on Harvey and Lake streets last night.

The Harvey’s Green Apartment Complex will be built by the JKC Land Company and will contain two complexes with 24 two-bedroom apartments.

The apartment plans were passed over the objections of several residents living in the Harvey Street area.

“I can’t believe they are proposing something so large in this area,” Harvey Street resident Don Quier said. “The lights and traffic will be so obtrusive that nobody will want to live there.”

Other residents expressed concern that the apartments would attract college students and drive away families from the area.

“I would much rather see the land the way it is now in the neighborhood,” Harvey Street resident Ed Moisio said. “Harvey Street should be for homeowners and not for rental property.”

JKC Land Company director Jerry Cohen said the price range of the apartments put them out of the reach of some students.

“This is going to be a low-rent, high utilities facility,” he said. “There are going to be students in this complex, but it’s not aimed at students.”

He plans to reduce crowding by allowing only two tenants per apartment, he said. So if three people want to live in the two-bedroom apartments, they will not be permitted.

The commission also passed a resolution for the Community Development Office to study the traffic and the entrances and exits to the complex. The Development Office will decide whether there should be a driveway built to access Lake or Harvey streets.

The apartments are being built according to environmentally conscious specifications that include low-flow water fixtures, recyclable materials and drought-friendly landscaping, architect Joe Linek said.

“A project like this has never been done before in Ohio,” he said. “This is a great start to what we hope will be a large movement of environmentally conscious housing throughout Ohio.”

In other business, the commission improved the expansion and paving of the existing parking lot at the Smithers-Oasis on Stow Street.

Contact news correspondent Amanda Garrett at [email protected].