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After nearly a year of debate, the Genecov Group and homeowners in the Hollytree area have found a compromise for a nearby development.

The Genecov Group presented new site plans to Tyler’s Planning and Zoning Committee on Tuesday.

Genecov Group President Ray McKinney said in addition to tweaking plans as previously discussed, the developer also met with homeowners association leaders. McKinney said the homeowner groups brought a proposal that they felt would satisfy both sides, and presented the agreed-to changes to the P&Z committee. All matters approved by the committee must still be sent to the City Council for approval.

At the heart of the issue is a proposed mixed residential and business development. Renderings presented show the buildings would have apartments situated above businesses similar to the Copper Ridge luxury lofts next to Fresh by Brookshire’s on the Old Jacksonville Highway.

Oak Hollow Homeowners Association representative Mark Loughmiller thanked the Genecov Group and the city for working with homeowners.

”I can’t communicate strongly enough how opposed we were to the development earlier in the year,” he said. “Today we’ve done a full 180 (degree turn).”

He said the final product was a good compromise that they are in total agreement with. John Hart, president of the Hollytree Homeowners Association, also thanked the city and developer for working with the homeowners he helps represent.

”This is the way government should work,” Hart said. “They (Genecov) are good citizens and good neighbors.”

Also discussed in the meeting was a proposed tiny home community at Donnybrook Avenue and Wilma Street. The proposed community would function as extended stay units, of about 450 square feet each, aimed at medical professionals in town for a few weeks or months. The zoning plans called for 18 units and a common area. The plans were tabled for 30 days to allow the developer to gather input from neighbors and work with the city to help the plans better fit current zoning laws, which were written with much larger residential units in mind.

Tyler Junior College had a special use permit approved for a temporary restroom to be built in the area being used as a temporary softball practice field behind the Woodlands area of campus at Devine Street and South Porter Avenue.The area, which at one point had a nursing home, was cleared and is being used for the school’s softball team. The college hopes to build a permanent facility on the property in the next few years.

“Within three years we’ll have a permanent facility there and a venue that is appropriate and beneficial to the community,” TJC board member David Hudson said.

The land is currently zoned as residential, which allows it be to used for school sports fields.

Jamie and Linda Hall, whose home is next to one portion of the property, were concerned the college was going to force neighbors to sell when the time comes for building a full facility.

Hudson said in his 18 years on the board it has never used imminent domain, and TJC President Juan Mejia said that after hearing their concerns the college will begin dialogue with nearby homeowners to ensure they’re being good neighbors.

Photos presented show the field is insulated by tree lines in all directions.

Cory is a multimedia journalist and member of the Education Writers Association, Criminal Justice Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors. He has appeared on Crime Watch Daily and Grave Mysteries on Investigation Discovery.

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