By Conrad Dudderar
Rezoning for new development near S.W. 15th and Sara Road has been approved after an agreement between the applicant and concerned residents near Mustang Creek.
The Oklahoma City Council, at its April 28th meeting, voted 9-0 on an application to rezone a 10-acre property at 10630 S.W. 15th to allow 80 duplexes on the site.
A multi-use development is proposed south of S.W. 15th and west of Sara Road, southeast of Yukon in far west Oklahoma City.
David Box, an attorney for 720 Management LP, told council members the rezoning to R-2 (multi-family residential) was appropriate based on Oklahoma City’s Comprehensive Plan.
The planned development is directly east of the United Methodist Church of the Good Shepherd, at the bottom of the Mustang Creek basin.
Church members and property owners in neighboring housing additions had asked Oklahoma City leaders to address drainage and traffic issues before approving any more development in this area of eastern Canadian County.
“We’ve had multiple discussions with folks involved in the church, which is west of the creek, as it relates to flooding,” attorney Box said.
“Most of their concerns are not having to do with use of the land. Rather their concerns are for drainage and the general safety of the residents.”
Drainage caused by 10 “duplex acres” would be the same if single-family homes were there, Box explained.
“What we will have to do, as we go through the final plat, is to come up with a safe solution for drainage,” he said. “We will have to do detailed drainage studies that will be submitted to Oklahoma City’s engineering department for review, comment, perhaps revision, and ultimately approval.”
During the platting process for the S.W. 15th/Sara Road site, attorney Box said the applicant will:
- Ensure the development is safe “from a pedestrian standpoint, a vehicular standpoint and a drainage standpoint.”
- Work with the church and homeowners’ association members to provide all documents as they become available before final plats are considered by the planning commission.
- Work with Oklahoma City’s engineering department as civil engineer Mark Grubbs provides detailed drainage studies.
BIG CHANGES ON THE WAY
New Oklahoma City Ward 3 Council Member Barbara Young said citizens in the Westbury Addition have contacted city officials about the proposed development. Westbury is on the east side of Sara Road.
Box assured Westbury residents that drainage studies will take into consideration the impact on their neighborhood.
Plans call for Sara Road to be widened south of Interstate 40 toward Mustang to address growth in the area. Drainage studies also will be required for this project in Oklahoma City.
“There are big changes on the way for this part of the city as it relates to drainage and traffic that I think will be positive,” Box added.
Council Member Young agreed.
“It will be a positive improvement to the area,” the Ward 3 council member said. “I look forward to it, as I know many residents do.”
UMC-Good Shepherd trustee Mike Smith thanked the applicant’s representatives for coming up with a resolution he believes will be “favorable for all involved.”
A certified geologist, Smith cited the efforts of the developer and attorney Box for their “commitment and guarantee” to pursue solutions to both safety and drainage issues on these lands.
Church members are most concerned about public safety and drainage onto the church property, fellow church trustee Karen Graves added.
A Yukon realtor, Graves thanked Oklahoma City engineers for developing new ordinances “that will help the drainage in the whole general area.”
She referred to a drainage system that Oklahoma City has required for a 200-acre commercial development north of S.W. 15th.
These actions should help “ease flooding,” Graves said after the meeting.
“We’re on the right track,” she said. “We’ve really made progress.
“We’re not trying to stop development. We just want to make sure development does not pose a risk to public safety.”
ACCESS IN HIGH WATERS
Jake Bogner, a Mustang Creek resident, lives just south of the proposed S.W. 15th/Sara Road addition.
“The main concern we as residents have focuses on the access to Sara Road,” Bogner said during the April 28th council meeting. “During high water runoff through Mustang Creek and the two bridges that border our addition, definitely low-riding vehicles have no access.
“I’m sure the city will take this into consideration as we enhance Sara Road. All enhancements on Sara Road must take into consideration this water drainage issue severely.”
He referred to water approaching his neighbors’ front doors during heavy rainfall.
Bogner asked the developer and Oklahoma City officials for their help to protect the children and “established residents” in this area.
“Mustang Creek currently has erosion from the advancement of Kilpatrick Turnpike,” he told council members. “That’s a great addition to our city, but it has sped the velocity and volume of water down Mustang Creek.”
Ward 3 Council Member Young, a former Westbury homeowner, recently was elected to Oklahoma City’s nine-member city council. She pledged to stand with her constituents.
“I certainly appreciate all of the involvement of the citizens of Ward 3 in and around this area,” the Canadian County resident said.
“I can ‘second’ all the concerns that have been expressed and I can assure those residents that I will be an advocate for good development in that area.”