Public hearing on Nesbitt Road apartment plan

The Plan Commission has scheduled a public hearing for Tuesday, Aug. 20, to consider putting as many as 82 apartments on the corner of Nesbitt and Fitchrona Roads.

Developers told the commission last month the lot, on the border of the Town of Verona, is poorly suited for commercial use, even though the vast majority of the Orchard Pointe development it’s in is planned for some sort of retail.

Commissioners then approved a recommendation to change the comprehensive plan to allow multifamily housing on the lot. But city planners had not endorsed the amendment, citing the proximity of single-family homes and the lack of parkland, and this month’s Plan Commission packet notes “staff continues to have these concerns.”

A representative of developer Orchard Pointe Partners told the commission July 16 that a wooded area would act as a buffer to adjacent homes and noted that there were many recreational areas and fitness facilities in the area. Commissioners generally agreed, saying it would be a boost to the neighborhood and businesses.

The 4.1-acre lot once contained a single-family home that was moved several years ago to downtown Verona and is wooded on the north and west edges. It sits directly across from It’s Your Party and Bavaria Sausage and was previously planned for up to 24,000 square feet of small shops and up to 14 homes.

Tuesday, the commission will see a concept plan for the apartments themselves.

The following week, the Common Council will consider the change in the comprehensive plan, along with the amendment to the development plan.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. at Fitchburg City Hall, 5520 Lacy Road.

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