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Brookfield commissioners to review Ruby Farm, Sileno quarry plans

Sept. 3, 2014

Major project are on the agenda for the City of Brookfield at next week's Plan Commission meeting.

The meeting will likely include a second presentation by the developer Irgens in regard to the company's plans for The Corridor at Ruby Farm. On another matter, the Regal family's proposal to build luxury apartments on 10 acres of property at the Sileno quarry site is likely to be discussed.

"We're expecting them to come back (next week)," City of Brookfield Director of Community Development Dan Ertl said, of Irgens' Ruby Farm project.

The meeting will be Irgens' first return since its initial presentation in July. At that time, commissioners expressed doubts on certain aspects of the project, including a lack of residential space and the intent to remove the Ruby Farm barn.

Commissioner Gary Mahkorn called for something on a grander scale, noting Ruby Farm's status as one of the city's last undeveloped areas.

"This is the last bastion of development in this community. That is significant," Mahkorn said in July. "I would like to see something more dramatic than what's being proposed here."

Ertl says that the developer is returning with significant changes to its original proposal, but could not comment further.

Irgens has provided only one brief comment since the July Plan Commission meeting.

"In regards to The Corridor, we are taking into consideration the collective comments of the various community stakeholders and working them into our plan," Irgens vice president Dave Merrick said.

Another stakeholder that Merrick may have been referring to is the Concerned Calhoun Community, which has expressed displeasure with Irgens' previous plan to remove the historic barn on the site. Irgens proposed to save and arrange for new use of the Ruby Farm farmhouse, but felt that the barn was not a good fit for the future development.

Irgens original plans as presented in July called for 782,000 square feet of mixed-use development including office space, retail space, and uses such as medical, hospitality, fitness, and wellness. The city's plans for the property call for approximately 1.2 million square feet, including some residential area.

In July, Merrick said that "residential is not a synergistic use" for the development.

Sileno quarry

Another major item on the docket for next Monday is the Regal family's proposal to build luxury apartments on 10 acres of property at the Sileno quarry site.

The project was last discussed at a joint meeting of the Plan Commission and the Parks and Recreation Commission in February.

Mark Regal, a leader with Brookfield Residents Against the Dump (BRAD), accepted an offer in December to purchase the property at 13505 W. Burleigh Road. BRAD and Regal previously opposed the dumping of fill at the quarry in order to level out the land.

The current zoning for the property allows for only up to 29 units; however, the project calls for at least 89 units. Rezoning may be necessary to accommodate that plan.

Regal has offered to donate part of the land to the city for use as a park.

In February, officials did not come to any decision on accepting the donation; however, they expressed interest in acquiring an area of approximately 15 acres on the western side of the property to serve as a park connected to Lilly Road.

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