Prior Lake City Council unanimously approved a major amendment to the Jeffers Pond Apartments planned unit development at its latest city council meeting on Monday, Feb. 27.
Rachel Development and Vincent Development, on behalf of the property owner, Jeffers Foundation, applied for an amendment to the planned unit development for a proposed high density apartment project. The property is in the southwest corner of the County Road 42 and 21 intersection, along Fountain Hills Drive NW.
According to city officials, a 197-unit market rate building spanning over 9 acres was also proposed at the southwest corner of Jeffers Parkway and County Road 42. Construction is anticipated to start in 2023, but the development still needs final approval.
Jeff Matzke, city planner, said the original planned unit development plan for Jeffers Pond was approved in 2005. Since that time, residential neighborhoods have been platted and developed, as well as the streets, public park/trail system, the elementary school and the fire station.
On Dec. 12, 2022, the Prior Lake Planning Commission conducted a public hearing to consider the major amendment to the planned unit development to allow the construction of the apartment project.
To date, nine neighborhoods have been developed within Jeffers Pond. These neighborhoods were originally anticipated to provide 579 units. However, only 345 units have been created, according to city documents.
“Jeffers Pond has such a dynamic planning development history,” Matzke said. “The planned unit development is a residential and commercial development project that has primarily been designed for residential in the years since 2005 since it was first developed. Most recently, it does have a commercial childcare facility as part of it.”
Site planDuring the meeting, Matzke said what’s being proposed is a 140-unit, three-story market rate apartment building, as well as over 35,00 square feet of future commercial land uses. He said the western half of the property consists of 11.3 acres and the site is currently vacant.
Matzke also said the development plan also proposes a single four-story apartment building and an area for future commercial development.
According to city documents, the design calls for 380 parking spaces — 263 spots (140 underground/123 surface) for residential, and 117 spaces for the future commercial area. The current access to the site is from the intersection of Fountain Hills Drive at the roundabout.
“There have been 10 major amendments and a lot of changes over the years to the Jeffers Pond development project since 2005,” Matzke said. “Basically, when we get to each aspect of the development, we go through another amendment procedure. The planning commission as well as the city council, has the ability to individually approve these development elements as part of this initial development design.”
Matzke said at this time, city staff is recommending approval of the major planned unit development amendment for the 140-unit apartment building and the designation of the 35,000 square feet of future commercial land uses. He also said the site will require approval of a final plat by the city council prior to any construction.
“The applicant will still need to go through final plat approval for this project so the city council will see that in the next upcoming months for the platting of the property,” Matzke said. “But that necessarily wouldn’t be a large planning discussion item as it will mainly involve final plat development agreement.”
For more information on the Jeffers Pond apartment development, visit https://www.priorlakemn.gov/.