Developers Ben Hansbrough and Mitch Wright are betting that Bowling Green’s appetite for apartment living hasn’t yet been satisfied.
At Thursday night’s City-County Planning Commission of Warren County meeting, Hansbrough and partner Rishi Agarwal were approved for a rezoning that could lead to a 32-unit apartment development with a commercial component along Plano Road. Meanwhile, Wright won approval for a rezoning that could bring eight apartments to Chestnut Street in downtown Bowling Green.
Both rezonings will go to the Bowling Green City Commission for final approval.
Hansbrough, Agarwal and property owner Stan Darr won unanimous approval from the planning commission to rezone three acres adjacent to the Magnolia Hills subdivision from agriculture to highway business and multi-family residential.
The plan calls for two 16-unit apartment buildings at the part of the property farthest from Plano Road, two commercial buildings nearest Plano Road and three office and professional buildings in the middle section.
Hansbrough and Agarwal said they believe the area near the Plano Road-Interstate 165 interchange is ripe for commercial development now that a number of homes and apartments have been built.
“There are a lot of residents along that road now,” said Agarwal, a local physician. “There’s not enough commercial business to serve them.”
Agarwal said a pharmacy, other medical professionals and possibly a restaurant would be good fits in the area.
“We feel like this is a great opportunity in a growing area,” said Hansbrough, a former men’s basketball assistant coach at Western Kentucky University. “We will look at what the needs are and what the demands are for the commercial part.”
Wright believes the Chestnut Street property presents an opportunity to cash in on the growing multi-family residential presence in downtown Bowling Green. The 0.54-acre tract currently used as a parking lot is owned by Dean Warren, whose Northwestern Mutual financial services office is nearby on East Main Avenue.
Warren, a member of the planning commission, didn’t vote on the application to rezone the property from central business and office & professional/residential to general business, and it passed 10-0.
Wright said the rezoning, if approved by the city commission, will allow him to take advantage of a need for apartments that he has experienced firsthand.
He developed the St. James apartments at 1133 Chestnut St. and said that seven-unit development is full, as are downtown apartment developments The Vue and Lenox Place.
“St. James is full, and we get calls all the time from people looking for an apartment,” Wright said. “There’s still a market for folks who want downtown living. This is a great location with all that Bowling Green has done with the downtown area.”
Wright said this new development at Chestnut Street and Spring Alley will be similar to the St. James apartments. It will include two- and three-bedroom units, storage space in the basement level, and covered parking.
In other action, the planning commission approved rezoning 5.04 acres at 394 Cleveland Drive from agriculture to residential estate in order for Michael and Sara Cowles to develop the property with two single-family residential lots. The rezoning will go to Warren Fiscal Court for final approval.
The commissioners also approved a rezoning in the Alvaton area that could clear the way for a convenience store development.
Bipin Patel, who developed the AM Express store on Three Springs Road, is looking to put a BP gas station and a store he’s calling Alvaton Market on a 0.7-acre tract at Alvaton Road and Mount Lebanon Road.
The rezoning application for the property that is visible from Scottsville Road and near Alvaton Elementary School was originally on the planning commission agenda Oct. 3. It was postponed a month to give Patel time to come up with more detailed architectural plans. The rezoning passed 8-1 Thursday and will go to fiscal court for final approval.
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