Proposed St. Charles apartments targeting young professionals

Developers say they are targeting young professionals with a proposal to build 66 luxury rental apartments on the east side of St. Charles.

Prairie Place Lofts would feature three residential buildings — two with 24 units and one with 18 — in the Pheasant Run Crossing subdivision, according to a concept plan presented Monday to the planning and development committee.

Developer 3KB Enterprises, LLC is asking to change the lot's zoning classification from regional business district to multifamily residential.

Aldermen agreed the project would be appropriate for the property, which is north of Main Street behind the Volkswagen dealership. But before moving forward, they said, they'd like to see more detailed landscaping plans, additional amenities and better access to the site.

The one- and two-bedroom apartments would cater to residents between the ages of 20 and 35 who are in a “transitional state” of their lives, said Nick Varchetto, site development project manager for Engineering Resource Associates. That demographic includes individuals, couples and young families who may be looking to settle down in the suburbs, but are not yet ready to purchase a house.

The site's proximity to downtown St. Charles — about 2½ miles away — and its accessibility to grocery stores and other retail options make it ideal for a multifamily development, Varchetto said. It also backs up to townhouses and is next to the Silverado Memory Care senior living facility.

“Being adjacent to residential already, I think that makes the land use a good one,” Alderman Rita Payleitner said.

After reviewing the concept last week, the city's plan commission suggested adding landscape buffering along the north end of the property and creating additional outdoor amenities and green space, such as walking trails and parks. A secondary or emergency access route also should be explored, commissioners said.

Those comments were echoed by aldermen at Monday's meeting. Varchetto said developers are working to update the plans accordingly.

The proposed apartments would range from 855 square feet for a one-bedroom, one bathroom unit, to 1,136 square feet for two bedrooms and two bathrooms, according to a summary from developers. Each unit would have an in-unit washer and dryer, stainless steel appliances, individual heating and cooling, and a 90-square-foot balcony or patio.

The three-story buildings would be constructed with a high-quality masonry exterior, Varchetto said, designed to reflect the city's historic architecture and character.

“I like how we're incorporating some of the downtown feel a little bit farther east,” Alderman Lora Vitek said.

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