Hundreds Raise Concerns About 6-Story Condo Development In Orem
OREM, Utah – Neighbors gathered Monday evening to learn more about a proposed high-density condo development while raising their concerns about the project.
The 70-foot-high, six-story building planned near 1600 North and 400 West will feature up to 55 condos, according to property owner and developer Dennis O’Brien.
“They’ll have nice relaxation on the second level and up on the top levels and the views will be dynamic for the people that are on the fourth, fifth and sixth levels,” said O’Brien, who added that he hoped the neighborhood would be proud of the development.
Neighbors who braved the rain and chilly temperatures to listen to an architect’s presentation weren’t entirely receptive to the pitch.
“We’re not anti-development, we’re just anti-inappropriate development where there’s reduced access and traffic issues that already exist in the access points that they identify on 1600 North,” said Stephanie Visnaw.
Jill Barrick raised traffic concerns in particular as she stood next to a table of petitions pledged to be sent to Orem city leaders over the matter.
“We’re trying to use that angle to try and stop the development or get the city to seriously take a look at it,” Barrick said.
O’Brien said concerns about additional traffic were due to “misconceptions.”
“This is 55 units or less with underground parking and two accesses,” he said. “This is less than — every study that we’ve done — if you were to put in a Taco Bell, an In-N-Out, a Chick-Fil-A, a Panda Express or Swig,” O’Brien said. “The studies we saw said that if you put retail in here, you’d have more traffic.”
O’Brien said he had done all the city had asked and already altered the plan once to move the building 75 feet back from the curb.
“When the neighbors were concerned about the original that the city allowed, we went 75 feet back from the curb,” O’Brien said. “That means that the closest house is over 150 feet. They don’t get any shadowing, they barely will see. The ones around this corner won’t even see the house.”
Barrick said there has been a lack of transparency surrounding the project up to this point and she hoped the city would take a closer look.
“His design is beautiful — I give him credit for that,” Barrick said. “There’s just not the facilities or access for ingress and egress to, in my mind, make it float.”
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