City still looking for input on East Side Master Plan

The City of Platte City still wants to hear input from residents, but officials have a vision for undeveloped land east of Interstate 29.

Last month, the Platte City Planning and Zoning Commission viewed a presentation on the preferred design for the East Side Master Plan, which will provide direction for how to develop about 300 acres located between Highway 92 and HH Highway in Platte City. However, officials continue to maintain that the market will ultimately dictate the land use for about 40 acres of property belonging to the city and 260 privately owned.

Contributed graphic This aerial map shows the preferred concept for the East Side Master Plan for development in Platte City east of Interstate 29. A public hearing will be held Tuesday, Dec. 5 to allow input from citizens. Click the image for a larger view.

Contributed graphic
This aerial map shows the preferred concept for the East Side Master Plan for development in Platte City east of Interstate 29. A public hearing will be held Tuesday, Dec. 5 to allow input from citizens. Click the image for a larger view.

The master plan looks to cohesively develop the property.

“This is just the first step of a long process,” Platte City city administrator DJ Gehrt said. “This is what we think we want and then we work on the zoning. Largely, it’s going to depend on what type of developer we show up with. I think it’ll change as the market changes, but this gives us an idea of where we think we want to be at.

“It allows us to move forward, letting prospective developers and prospective landowners know this is our general anticipated development scheme.”

The city held public meetings in 2016 and 2017 but received little attendance from the public to provide input on the four models.

Eventually, the adopted preferred design showed a single arterial roadway running from north to south. The plan calls for “pad sites” — standalone retail — along light commercial, office space and residential areas (single family, multi-family and senior housing).

Once adopted, the planning and zoning commission would have control over the design and look of buildings within the undeveloped property. Design standards have also been included to help dictate the look of the area.

“Platte City has not had a true master plan design development project,” Gehrt said. “This would be the first one so we want a consistent look, consistent feel.”

The main entrance would be just west of Knighton Avenue (provides access to Wearhouse and More and Ken Pratt Trucking) on Highway HH and a continuation of Chapel Drive (provides access to Bank of Weston and Christ Chapel) off of Highway 92.

Officials worked with the Missouri Department of Transportation and adjacent property owners to look at future right of way needs to help develop the plan.

“It’s not going to build out at once,” Gehrt said, “but we’ll know where a road starts and a road ends and people can build toward each other.”

The draft of the East Side Master Plan refers to the undeveloped area as “Water Tower Park,” a working title intended to assist in differentiating it from the several other east side development activities planned or in progress.

A public hearing for the proposed master plan will be held at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, 5 during the planning and zoning commission meeting. Consideration of revisions or acceptance will be scheduled for the January meeting.

“It’s going to take a number of years, so what we really tried to do was look at the market,” said Jim Harpool of Evergreen Real Estate Services based out of Mission, Kan. “When you take 300 acres, there’s only so much you can do with retail so it’s really what are the other uses you can do and how do you mix those uses around infrastructure that works over time and provides some flexibility.”

The City of Platte City already paid to have a sewer line run from the west side of I-29 to the undeveloped area but continues to wait for the market to spur interest. Estimates on full buildout continue to fall in the 20-year range.

This continues the city’s focus on economic development, which includes the goal of retaining current businesses while also offering areas of growth.

“We’re going to try to put out a road map of kind of what we want,” Platte City city administrator DJ Gehrt previously said of the project. “The private sector and the private sector development, what happens there is going to drive the actual outcome. Government’s job is to set the stage and provide the foundation, and the private sector makes a lot of those decisions.”