The pending $30 million West Loop apartment and townhome project is now on hold with developer TriArc Asset 5 withdrawing its request.
As a result, no decisions or discussions took place at the Monday joint session between the El Campo City Council and the Planning & Zoning Commission. No public hearing was held.
Instead, Mayor Chris Barbee opened the council session with Planning & Zoning Vice Chairman John VonDerAu following suit.
VonDerAu then announced that TriArc’s application for a Planned Development zone on the West Loop at the South Street intersection had been rescinded on Friday.
No information was given on why, when or even if, the request would be refiled.
TriArc CEO Joseph Bramante is reportedly out of the country, but told the Leader-News Tuesday that, “We are reapplying under (an alternative) proposed layout in a few days.”
The development company now owns 26.15 acres fronted by the West Loop and had hoped to build a two-phase project covering that area, apartments and townhomes along with a walking trail, pools, fitness area and more.
P&Z rejected TriArc’s planned development Dec. 2. Council took up the issue on Dec. 21 voting 4-3 to send the issue to back to P&Z for further consideration.
Monday was the time for that consideration, but nothing happened.
Bramante has said TriArc is going to build in El Campo.
P&Z Commissioner D.B. Lundy called for P&Z to review the zoning on one section of TriArc’s land currently zoned R-1 or residential regardless of any TriArc plans.
“It doesn’t coordinate with the rest of the properties on the West Loop,” he said.
City Manager Courtney Sladek said the city and P&Z will look over all zoning on the West Loop and how it works with the Comprehensive Plan in the near future.
The plot TriArc was asking for a planned development is designated for apartments on the city’s comprehensive plan – a fact that played into city staff’s recommendation for approval, but was rejected by P&Z.
City councilwoman Anisa Vasquez called for a joint session with P&Z to review West Loop zoning during a council session which followed.
Also during the council session, Mayor Barbee thanked former P&Z Chairman Jeff Fuechec for his service to the city. Fuechec resigned Dec. 29 calling for younger people to join boards.
He also recommended a replacement, a move he told the newspaper is a P&Z tradition due to the difficulty in finding people to serve on city boards.
“It’s an unwritten rule on P&Z,” Fuechec told the newspaper. “Our favor to the city is to recommend a replacement.”
Finding people willing to serve on city boards is a daunting task, the former P&Z chief said, adding his recommendation was an effort to help city council.