A request to rezone 1.29 acres for townhouses off Dooley Street and Bushong Drive was withdrawn at the joint Grapevine City Council and planning and zoning commission meeting Dec. 19.
The townhouse rezoning would change the property from single-family housing to multifamily. The change would require a supermajority approval, or 82 percent of the votes in favor.
The application from Jason Rose initially included 10 detached townhouses that would be accessed from a private alley easement with access to Bushong Drive only. At the council meeting on Tuesday, however, Rose said he wanted to change the request to build only eight units.
“I realized If I was going to have a shot at [this project], the only way I could have a shot would be to remove two units and create a bigger buffer of tree space, particularly for the neighbors right behind the property mostly, and possibly maybe have a shot at this thing, because I knew it was an uphill battle,” Rose said.
Mayor William D. Tate said 17 residents had signed up to speak about the topic.
“You’re wasting your time in my opinion if you want to build eight or 10 townhouses,” Tate said. “If you want to come in and build single-family homes like the rest of the neighborhood, you don’t need any zoning.”
Rose said he understood that this was a contentious topic and said his vision for the project is a matter of supply and demand after he looked at the cost of homes in the area and the scarcity of land. In his presentation, Rose said he wanted to give the site its own unique appearance and separate it from the feel of the surrounding neighborhood, which was constructed primarily in the ’80s.
“Grapevine has built a lot of single-family homes … but that demographic is changing,” Rose said. “So what there is a shortage of, is homes that tend to be bought by single professionals. And this type of product attracts those.”
Council Member Duff O’Dell called attention to the fact the item considered at the meeting was for 10 units, not eight, and that a supermajority vote for the item was unlikely.
“I don’t think the quality of the work is the question,” O’Dell said. “You’re putting yourself kind of in a pickle. Our hands are a little bit tied here.”
Council Member Darlene Freed agreed, adding the density of townhouses next to a school district was also an issue.
Rose decided to agree and withdrew his application. A motion from the council to accept the withdrawal was approved.
“The application is withdrawn, so there’s no need to take any [resident]testimony,” Tate said. “I’ve only seen one supermajority override in my whole career, so this wasn’t going to happen—it wasn’t going to go through. And It’s not the proper use, it’s not the proper product for that neighborhood. It’s just too overpowering. … It is single family, and that’s what it needs to be.”