XR Development’s hopes to construct single-family detached and single-family attached homes on 38.4 acres of Cleburne land remain on hold until Aug. 25.

Cleburne City Council members, during their Tuesday meeting deadlocked 2-2 — Cleburne Mayor Scott Cain was absent from the meeting — on whether to delay action on XR’s request. Realizing the situation was at loggerheads, Mayor Pro Tem Chris Boedeker agreed to change his vote allowing for the delay, which was proposed by Councilman Bob Kelly. Councilman Mike Mann voted against the delay on both motions.

Kelly explained that while he supports new homebuilding he still has several questions about this particular development and wants more time to research the matter.

Among Kelly’s concerns were street width and the possibility of narrow streets affecting safety. Cleburne Director of Development Services Shane Pace assured council that XR has not requested a deviation on street width or standards and that the streets within the planned development will have to meet city street standards.

XR requested that the area in question be rezoned from SF-4 Single Family Dwelling District to Planned Development District.

The area in question sits about 184 feet north of Mann Court, about 122 feet south of Mimosa Street and about 248 feet west of Grand Avenue.

Mann said that his parents previously owned the land in question and had developed several of the adjacent neighborhoods in the early 1960s. Mann said his family sold the current land in question long ago but added that the individuals wishing to develop the property now have ties to Cleburne.

XR plans to construct 140 single-family homes and 22 town homes on the property, Pace said.

Notice was sent to property owners within 200 feet of the property in question, Pace said, which prompted 35 letters and/or calls from concerned residents both within and beyond the 200-foot radius.

Several of those residents attended Tuesday’s meeting as did representatives from XR.

Boedeker thanked all who took the time to attend.

“It’s good to hear feedback from this number of people on this type of project,” Boedeker said. “This is something we as a council take seriously.”

Robert Harris and his wife, Kay Harris, voiced concerns. The couple live on McAnear Court, a dead-end street scheduled to become a through street at some point during the four phases of planned development.

Both raised concerns of traffic and safety as well as property values, which they believe may decrease should the development move forward.

Lynn Limon, who lives on adjacent Mann Court, said she supports new homebuilding in Cleburne but worries about the quality of the planned development and its possible affect on adjacent property values given that it sits between a nice and a “trashy” neighborhood.

Barbara Sisk, who lives on Mimosa Street, asked if the developers would keep the property mowed and maintained throughout the building phases. Pace said they would.

Sisk questioned a traffic study the developers have agreed to undertake.

“Right now kids have been out of school for quite a while and [because of the COVID-19 pandemic] a lot of people are still working from home so it’s difficult to get accurate traffic counts right now,” he said.

Developers assured that, between counts taken before the pandemic coupled with historic data and current counts, an accurate count is still possible.

“Several red flags are flying up,” Kelly said. “I want more housing but I’m not for bogging up streets and traffic and I need to study this more.”

Councilman John Warren seemed to agree with councilmen Mann and Boedeker voiced support for the project.

Pace added that the Cleburne Planning and Zoning Commission approved the request during their July 13 meeting by a 4-1 vote. The commission, who also listened to concerns from several residents, added conditions to their approval. 

The conditions require XR to build a temporary drainage berm along the existing properties on Mann Court during construction and until a new road is built.

Commission conditions also require XR to a minimum lot size area of 6,000 square feet within Area A of the project with the exception of two lots which, because of space issues, can be 5,600 square feet.

Requirements also increased the minimum rear yard setback in Area B to 30 feet.

Developers agreed to the conditions, Pace said. They also agreed to make one planned two-story town home one story at the request of an adjacent landowner and to install privacy fencing.

Declaration extension

Council once again extended the city’s declaration of local disaster, something they’ve done eight times.  The new extension runs through Aug. 11.

“Following Gov. Greg Abbott’s  announcement of Open Texas, the city continues to take actions to promote health and safety, and suppress the spread of COVID-19 in the community,” City Manager Steve Polasek said.

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