A project by real estate investment firm Allen Harrison Company is expected to add multifamily units and a community recreation area to an 18-acre site in south McKinney.

McKinney City Council members approved a rezoning request in a 4-3 vote to allow the project to move forward at a March 19 meeting, with council members Patrick Cloutier, Geré Feltus and Charlie Philips voting against. Members of the McKinney Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously recommended approval of the rezoning request at a Feb. 27 meeting.

The gist

The development is planned for the southeast corner of McKinney Ranch Parkway and future Collin McKinney Parkway. Project representative Kevin Kuntz of Allen Harrison Company said the project is expected to cost $90 million.

A presentation by the developer included a plan for the site that featured six four-story buildings situated around a central parking structure. The site plan also includes a swimming pool and amenity center, according to city documents. The rezoning request limited the development to a maximum of 350 multifamily units, according to city documents.

On the southern end of the site, a space spanning 5.8 acres is expected to be converted into a public community recreation area. While the plan for the site has not been finalized, the space could feature a sport court, a playground, and hiking and biking trails, according to the presentation.

Also of note

The project would also include completion of a portion of Collin McKinney Parkway, which will bisect the site. The $2.5 million roadway project is expected to be completed by the developer, according to the presentation.

Kuntz said a traffic study identified that the roadway connection, once completed, would contribute to relieving traffic congestion that results from events at the neighboring McKinney ISD Stadium. The connection would also reduce traffic along adjacent roadways including Hardin Boulevard, McKinney Ranch Parkway, US 75 and SH 121, he said.

“It gives a secondary relief route where residents can kind of circumvent that congestion during peak traffic hours,” Kuntz said.

Diving deeper

A previous iteration of the project was considered by city council members at an Oct. 17 meeting but was denied, with council members expressing concerns about the proposed multifamily residential use.

City staff recommend disapproval of the project, both in the original and updated requests, due to its lack of alignment with the city’s comprehensive plan, which designates this tract of land as entertainment center place type.

City planning staff also expressed concerns for the close proximity of this project to other multifamily developments, as over 1,800 planned or existing multifamily units are within a mile of the site. Feltus also said her lack of support for the rezoning request was due to the density of multifamily residential housing in the area.

“I don’t want to see so much multifamily just continue to cluster together in this one segment of the city,” Feltus said.

Council member Justin Beller, who voted in favor of the request, said the project was an “appropriate use” for the site.

“I don’t know that we are going to find an alternative use for this site and coupled with that, we’re not going to find an alternative use for this site that’s going to be able to pay for the roadway that we desperately need,” Beller said.