Downtown Edmond getting two multistory buildings
EDMOND — The downtown Edmond landscape will change with the construction of two multistory buildings for retail, restaurant, office and living space.
Developer Brandon Rader, with Rader Building Co., wants to build The Campbell, a mixed-use project north of Campbell Street, west of Jackson Street and south of Edwards Street with parking between the two buildings.
City council members this week approved a commercial site plan to allow construction of the three- and four-story buildings.
One building would be three stories tall with 39,954 square feet of space to include 36 apartments. It would face Edwards Street.
The second building would be four stories tall and 43,203 square feet. Rader wants to build retail and restaurant space on the first floor and apartments and offices on the second and third floors. The fourth floor would be for a restaurant.
The plan is for 50 residential units with 27,764 square feet of retail, office and restaurant space in an area that is zoned downtown residential district.
Rader said the apartments will be rented by the unit, not by the bedroom. A one-bedroom unit will be about 700 square feet and rent for about $900 a month.
Parking was a major complaint about the project. The developer calculated he would need 119 spaces by taking a 25 percent discount in the number of parking spaces as written in the city code, which bases parking spots needed on commercial square footage and apartment size.
This is the first time anyone has tried to use the 25 percent discount when multifamily housing is included in a project.
An old ordinance specifically states the discount is for commercial property. When the code was rewritten, it did not specify for what type of property the discount could be used.
City Attorney Steve Murdock said this is the first time the discount has been requested on multifamily housing.
Rader included 113 parking spaces in his site plan and agreed to put up money to pay for the six other parking spaces he is short. The money would be held by city officials and used in the future to pay for additional downtown parking.
Downtown property owner Pete Reeser told council members he calculated Rader is 35 parking spaces short because he doesn't think the 25 percent discount can be used for apartment parking.
Planning Director Jan Ramseyer Fees said planning officials will be looking at the code to determine if it can be made clearer for future projects.
Property owners and merchants also are concerned about the amount of time it is taking to correct downtown flooding problems. They asked that no more building permits be issued for downtown until the problem is solved.
Assistant City Manager Jim Smith said design work for the flooding is near completion, and utility relocation plans are due to the city by Oct. 1. They hope to have bids for the project in January, after the holiday season, because the project is expected to be disruptive for downtown.
Three of the council members voted in favor of The Campbell site plan. Councilwoman Elizabeth Waner abstained, which counts as a no vote, and Councilwoman Victoria Caldwell recused herself from voting.
“I think it is too much,” Waner said. “We have not used the formula for residential. I don't think it is ready for prime time.”