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Some AV homeowners oppose construction of smaller houses

Project appealed after Planning Commission approval

APPLE VALLEY • Residents near the Lewis Center say they oppose housing construction recently approved by the Apple Valley Planning Commission because newly proposed homes on the 35-lot tract would be much smaller than theirs, a planning commissioner who voted against the project said.

Homeowners were promised when they bought their homes that future houses built there would be of similar size, said Planning Commissioner Mark Shoup.

“I didn’t like it because they were not focusing on the people who currently live there,” Shoup said. The homeowners, some of whom spoke against the project at the Planning Commission meeting when the expansion was approved, said they want to maintain the quality of homes in the neighborhood, he said.

The original developer built homes on 12 of the 35 lots but had to halt the project when the market collapsed in 2008. Evergreen Homes LLC in Victorville purchased the remaining 23 graded lots near Mana and Aniwa roads.

Dave Faylor, a partner at Evergreen, said the company will be ready to start building in about three months as long as he gets orders.

Home construction has nearly ceased in the Victor Valley partly because resale prices have been too low. Local leaders are hoping new home construction will be a shot in the arm for the local economic recovery.

“The homes that are proposed in this project are totally consistent with the size of the Branding Iron neighborhood, which consists of 70 homes surrounding this project,” Faylor said.

The maximum square footage of Evergreen’s proposed homes range between 2,956 and 3,362 square feet — 23 percent to 31 percent smaller than the original plan, according to staff reports prepared by the town. Evergreen has agreed to increase the sizes upon the Planning Commission’s request, Faylor said.

Faylor said no one would buy a 4,000-square -foot home in today’s market.

The Town Council is scheduled to discuss the project during a Feb. 26 public meeting, town spokeswoman Kathie Martin said. Martin said she was not immediately able to get the names of the existing homeowners listed on the appeal Wednesday.

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