Redwood Apartment Neighborhoods, a builder of high-end apartment units, is seeking to build on property in Auburn Township. The company is interested in 31 acres at the southeast corner of Route 422 and Ravenna Road (Route 44).

The Auburn Zoning Commission will be considering Redwood’s proposal for a change in the township zoning to allow the attached homes located on private roads and an amendment to the township zoning map, according to Auburn Zoning Inspector Frank Kitko. Being private roads, the township would not maintain them.

The area considered by Redwood is currently zoned for general business.

There is a sewage treatment facility owned by Geauga County near the property being considered by Redwood, which submitted an application to the Auburn Zoning Commission on Sept. 26.

The zoning commission accepted the application and set a public hearing on the matter for Oct. 17. The Planning Commission meets at 7:30 p.m. at the Auburn Administration Building.

The proposed application seeks an amendment to the township zoning resolution to add an R-3 District which would allow single-family, attached dwellings.

Auburn does not have the zoning to permit the use, so a change must be made to create the zoning for the attached dwellings.

Once the planning commission holds its meeting, its recommendation will be sent to the Auburn Township Trustees for a decision in a public hearing. The Geauga Planning Commission will also review the application on Oct. 8 and will make a recommendation to the planning commission for consideration before it goes on to the trustees for a final decision.

The township zoning commission can approve, deny or approve the application with suggested modifications.

Redwood, which serves as the manager of the apartments, is proposing 110 units. The apartments would be single story and geared to senior citizens and empty nesters, with a lower square footage and no more than two bedrooms. It is not expected to bring in many children to the school district.

The apartments would not have basements and would be 25 feet in height. Rental could be short term and rental furniture is available, according to information from Redwood.

The units must be connected to a sewage treatment center and on a state highway. There is an existing treatment plant at Route 422 and Ravenna Road and Geauga County Commissioners recently approved a contract that would allow for the expansion of the plant in Auburn.

It is different from the Auburn Lakes subdivision in which the condominiums stand alone and are owned by the occupants.

The Redwood development is seen as one that could provide alternatives for seniors who want to stay in the area but without the maintenance of a house.

Redwood manages single-story apartments of which Steve Kimmelman is the founder. They promote them as “apartments that feel like home.” They were founded in Akron. The maintenance is taken care of by Redwood, which permits up to three pets to a unit.

Rental costs quoted on the website include a variety of prices, with anything from $1,349 to $2,000 and up per month. The square footages of the various apartments range from 1,349 up to about 2,747 square feet in size. They are energy efficient and quieter than other apartments, according to Redwood.

Chardon Attorney Dale Markowitz, who is representing Redwood in its application in Auburn, said the owner of the property lives in Geauga County.

Setbacks for riparian areas will be respected and existing trees will be maintained on the property, he said. The apartment homes include increased insulation to be energy efficient and quieter.

There are similar dwelling units in Geauga County including in Chardon, Burton and Middlefield, Mr. Markowitz said.

He said Redwood also has apartment units in a number of states including Michigan, Indiana, Iowa and the Carolinas. Its headquarters are located in Independence, Ohio.

The apartments are a specific style being single story with attached garages and in a neighborhood setting, according to Redwood. Each unit has its own street address and private entrances, front and back.

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