Decatur approves comprehensive site plan for Legacy Park

Decatur’s city commission recently approved a comprehensive site plan for Legacy Park essentially providing detailed housing guidelines for the site’s North and South Villages.

In Dec. 2018, commissioners approved a Legacy master plan as a general guide for what the city could build on the property. But the comprehensive plan is more specific, an additional layer before the city begins negotiating with potential partners and/or developers.

In the North Housing Village (south of Derrydown Way) the plan calls for a combination of up to 25 detached single-family cottages and duplexes, with each unit no greater than 1500 square feet and no greater than 25 feet in height.

The historic Sam Bell and Glenn buildings together have potential to house an additional 16 co-housing units.

The South Housing Village (north of Katie Kerr Drive) includes walkup flats, multiplexes and duplexes, or a combination of these types, with up to 130 units.

As City Manager Andrea Arnold pointed out recently, “any developer on the property has to conform to [this] site plan.”

The comprehensive site plan also includes a track, a playground and a creative village that would likely assimilate, or partly assimilate, the historic cottages on the property’s west side. The site plan doesn’t define how much affordable housing or what income tier of affordable housing will be included. But in the Dec. 2018 master plan affordable housing was identified as a major priority.

Two early goals have been achieved by constructing a cross-country course and planting an orchard on the northwest corner. But the 77-acre property’s first major activity will likely relate to housing.

So far no specific use has been identified for the circa-1900 granite barn on the property’s middle area, though it’s been suggested as ideal for some type of events space.