Westfield City Council seeks more details from developer

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Westfield City Council members are expected to hear more information this month from a developer who says a global company is seeking to locate its business on more than 180 acres on the north side of State Road 38.

Indianapolis-based Holladay Properties is seeking to obtain approval from the city to rezone 183.5 acres of land on the north side of Ind. 38 between Anthony Road and Hinkle Road. The company is seeking to change the zoning designation from agriculture/single-family rural district to the Northpoint II PUD District, which was given an unfavorable recommendation by the city’s Advisory Plan Commission last month.

Residents living in the area have already voiced concern about issues such as noise and light pollution if the property were developed. Chris Wilkes, who oversees development for Holladay Properties, appeared before the Westfield City Council during its Aug. 22 to discuss his company’s plans as a crowd of more than 25 people gathered inside Westfield City Hall.

Wilkes said he could not disclose the name of the global company seeking to locate on the acreage because of confidentiality but noted discussions have been ongoing for more than a year. The company is involved in advanced manufacturing, he added.

However, council members said they were concerned about the impact the proposed development would have on homeowners living nearby.

“The project would certainly dominate the landscape,” City Councilman Mike Johns said. “I think it’s a great project, but it’s in the wrong place.”

Fellow councilman Jake Gilbert also pointed out that residents have a say in the project and asked the council for a delay to see if there can be a compromise between homeowners and the developer.

“A project of this magnitude requires mutual dialogue,” Gilbert said.

City Councilman Scott Frei also asked Wilkes to go back to the company seeking more information and whether specific terms can be identified. 

Johns said he would like to see a company come forward with a letter of intent but pointed to past proposals and said that “90 percent of these things never come to fruition.” He did not expect to see a letter of intent at the next council meeting, but if there is one, he would reconsider his position.

Johns added that he is looking forward to hearing more information from Wilkes about the proposed project and the company. The council’s next meeting will be 7 p.m. Sept. 12 at Westfield City Hall, 130 S. Penn St.

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