by Dawn Feddersen-Poindexter
The Rogers City Council gave preliminary approval for a Federal Express distribution warehouse on Brockton Lane, near Interstate 94.
It also heard from concerned neighbors about a planned housing development on 129th Avenue.
Fed Ex is planning to build a 304,809-square-foot distribution warehouse on the west side of Brockton Lane, across from 124th Avenue and east of I-94. The site will take up 65 acres of the Kinghorn property. The land is currently farmland, woodland, and some open areas for elk grazing.
The new site will also include a 5180-square-foot maintenance building, a 2400-square-foot security building, and 1,459 parking spaces. The facility will operate as a package-sorting and distribution warehouse and will provide outdoor storage to truck trailers, vans, tractors and trucks. The site will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The council was largely in favor of the project. Council members did express concerns about access to the site and enough trees to make it look attractive from Brockton Lane, but were assured that the access would be granted through the adjacent Henry property and that the footprint of the site would be moved to accommodate a large row of trees along Brockton Lane.
The council also discussed the potential rezoning of 9 acres at 22101 129th Avenue to allow for a single-family housing development.
Benzinger Properties applied to rezone the land R-3 to allow for smaller lots than what is currently required on the land.
Many neighbors, particularly those on Adeline Way which backs up to the property, expressed concern over smaller lots and homes coming into the neighborhood and lowering property values. The residents who spoke to the council said that existing homes in the neighborhood are generally on lots over 15,000 square feet.
Jeff Benzinger, of Benzinger Properties, said, “I’m not asking for a lot more. I’m trying to do this to compete. Bigger lots come in at a much bigger price and I don’t see how we can compete.”
He said that the lots would be an average of 14,500 square feet. Of the 12 lots, the few smallest would be 12,500 square feet and the largest would be over 15,000 square feet. He expects the homes to sell for nearly $400,000.
“It’s a consistent fit for the neighborhood,” he said.
Many residents were also worried that an R3 zoning allows for multi-family housing. Though Benzinger assured everyone that multi-family housing was definitely not in his plans, the council and residents were concerned that it could become an issue in the future, as the zoning would stay with the land.
The council and Benzinger agreed that a Planned Unit Development, or PUD, was the best course of action for the land.
Mayor Jay Bunting said, “With a PUD, we as a city have an incredible amount of control. No multi-family, it’s not on the table. It will not be on the table, as far as I’m concerned.”
In other matters, Rogers Police Chief Jeff Beahen presented the Award for Exceptional Service to Officers Kris Koroll and Steve Sarazin, who helped capture two men who are suspected of a home invasion and assault in Elk River.
“These offenders were so violent, they were pretty far on the spectrum. The fact that these officers handled it so professionally and it had such a safe result. They did an amazing job,” Beahen said.