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Senior housing plan tabled to next month

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Cottage Grove,Minnesota 55016 http://www.swcbulletin.com/sites/all/themes/swcbulletin_theme/images/social_default_image.png
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Senior housing plan tabled to next month
Cottage Grove Minnesota 7584 80th Street South 55016

The Cottage Grove City Council tabled consideration of a proposal to build two senior housing facilities because the applicant was not present at its Oct. 18 meeting.

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Senior housing company Comforts of Home has plans to build two facilities on East Point Douglas Road, near Kohl's, and the final site plan is on the agenda for the council's Nov. 1 meeting.

Also up for approval is rezoning of the site to limited business B-1.

Council members said they wanted to know more about the company's plans for the development, and Mayor Sandy Shiely said she found it disconcerting that representatives from the business weren't at the meeting.

"To do a zoning amendment is huge," Council Member Karla Bigham said. "I do have a problem with not exactly knowing what's going in there."

The rezoning would also allow for commercial property to be developed.

The commercial phase would be built at a later date and developers would have to come back to the Council for approval on that portion. As of now, the developers are proposing office condos in that space.

The independent living facility would feature 48 apartments, underground parking, gathering areas, a private dining room, fitness area and kitchen.

This building would be the first to be built with construction hopefully starting next spring, said Matt Frisbie, the architect for the project.

The assisted living facility would contain 42 units, activity, dining and living areas, as well as a 10-unit memory care wing.

The City Council debated the location of the assisted living building at its meeting, because it is set up higher on the steep hill and would require a lot of trees to be removed.

The bright color of the buildings was also an issue with Council members.

Council member Pat Rice asked if they would be darkened to blend into the tree area, because of the visibility of the site from Highway 61.

The Council is concerned about the look of the project because it will be one of the first things people see as they enter Cottage Grove.

"We've been working for 40 years on an entrance to the city," Shiely said. "We want to make sure this is a top-rate facility."

Kieren Sell can be reached at ksell@swcbulletin.com

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