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The Jefferson County Council wants more information about a rezoning request that would allow a 200-unit apartment complex to be built in High Ridge.

The council voted unanimously Jan. 13 to hold a public hearing about a traffic study before it rules on a rezoning request from Lorenzo LLC of St. Louis that would pave the way for apartments to be built on 16.13 acres at Hwy. 30 and Old Sugar Creek Road and Wilderness Lane.

Councilman Brian Haskins (District 1, High Ridge), whose district includes the area, made the motion to order the limited public hearing before the council as soon as it can be scheduled.

“The traffic study has already been done,” Haskins said. “I think it’s a good idea to hear what it says so the residents of the area have confidence in the safety aspects of the plan. The traffic study will identify not only concerns with traffic, but also will offer solutions the developer may have to get on board with to get the project done. Once all the information is out there, I’m sure there will be a positive outcome for everybody concerned.”

The Jefferson County Planning Commission, which advises the County Council on zoning issues, sent the issue to the County Council without a recommendation after it deadlocked 4-4 at its Nov. 14 meeting on the rezoning request and preliminary plan.

The County Council has the ultimate authority to rezone property in unincorporated areas.

The request calls for seven buildings with 24 two-bedroom apartments and an eighth building with 32 one-bedroom units. An office and a pool also would be part of the development.

Lorenzo LLC is asking for five lots totaling the 16.13 acres to be rezoned from non-planned community commercial to planned residential. The land has been vacant since at least 1998.

Most of the objections from the six neighbors who spoke against the plans at the Nov. 14 hearing dealt with traffic issues along Old Sugar Creek Road, which has a mixture of residential and commercial uses, as well as at the major intersection at Old Sugar Creek Road and Hwy. 30.

One of the residents, Richard Hendrix, who lives south of the area, likened the Hwy. 30-Sugar Creek intersection to the Indianapolis Speedway.

“If you put this in, we’re going to have a lot of accidents, a lot of hurt people. And we take four or five lights now to get off of Old Sugar Creek onto Hwy. 30. You put another hundred cars in there and wait.”

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