Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal, July 2, 2001

Winsted development gets planning commission approval

By Patrice Waldron

It was an anti-climactic finish to the controversy surrounding the Winsted on the Lake development.

The preliminary plat of phase three of the development received the approval of the Winsted Planning Commission at Tuesday's meeting.

A review of four items took place, with letters and other documents being presented to the member of the commission.

Under final critique were:

- traffic flow standard;

- response from the Department of Natural Resources;

- landscape plan for the development; and

- the street width agreement with Roger Pauly.

Questions concerning traffic flow into the development were addressed by Cynthia Moeller-Krass, Winsted city engineer from SEH, Inc.

After consulting a transportation engineer, it was found that, based on a suburban neighborhood, there are an average of 9.57 trips per household on a weekday, fewer on the weekend.

The average should be less in a more rural area.

The southeastern 200 feet of Lake Drive, with eventually 71 housing units, would come out to about 679 trips per day, Moeller-Krass said.

The next 430 feet of Lake Drive extension, with 53 units planned, would have about 507 trips per day.

Local streets in suburban areas typically carry 200 to 600 trips per day.

A two-lane collector street, one which feeds traffic into a main artery, typically carries 500 to 10,000 trips per day, she added.

Another point made was that in Winsted, intersections are located about every 300 to 400 feet.

Zion Ave. already has four entrances in a one-quarter mile span. Adding another entrance would 9probably be too many entrances in too short a sight distance.

These figures were presented to the planning commission members in a letter by Moeller-Krass. However, no questions were asked.

Also by letter, the DNR notified the planning commission it has no objections to the plans for the development.

Landscaping

When it came time to discuss the landscaping of the development, Bill Gilk, developer of Winsted on the Lake, presented plans outlining tree placement, and photos of some of the landscaping already completed.

"If the pictures are inadequate, I would ask that if there are any more questions about that, then we move this meeting from its present location, and reconvene at the Winsted on the Lake for a tour," Gilk said.

He stated that in the first phase of the development, there were an average of six bushes and five trees planted per unit address.

The pictures he presented were taken at twin, town, and villa homes in the first addition.

The landscape plans in the second and third additions will be similar.

Gilk reiterated that his offer to tour the property was a serious one.

"If you're concerned about what we're doing, let's go have a look," said Gilk.

The landscaping of the single family homes is handled a little differently as most people want to do their own thing, he noted.

"As you're building a house, it becomes the love of your life for that period of time," said Gilk.

Land purchase

The only question which remains is whether or not Pauly, who owns property adjacent to the development, would be willing to sell a small portion of land to allow for the road to be widened to 60 feet.

A 60-foot width is required to put in a two-lane feeder road.

"Ultimately, you'd want it where it's drawn, for the nice curvature, and flow of traffic. If Pauly doesn't commit, you'd have to move the road over a bit," said Moeller-Krass.

According to City Clerk Betty Zachmann, the last time Mayor Don Guggemos spoke with Pauly, he had not made a decision regarding the sale of property.

"The best that we'll do is grade it (this year), and in the spring, put in water and sewer. We have the second addition to go in, and in the final days of planning, hopefully can incorporate the grading simultaneously with the third addition," said Gilk.

"I'd like to thank you, Bill for your patience with all of this nonsense. You've been much more patient than I'd have been, had I been sitting in your spot," said Marv Ebensperger of the planning commission.


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