Micro unit apartment project at Lake & Holmes clears Planning Commission

Rendering by Momentum Design Group

The city Planning Commission signed off on plans Jan. 9 for a new “micro unit” apartment building at 3009-3013 Holmes Ave. S.

The Solhem Companies project calls for seven stories (75 feet), with an additional two stories for an elevator overrun reaching 90 feet. The building will stand between the existing Solhem apartments on Holmes Avenue and the Lake Street building home to Jon English Hairspa and the new store Bentley’s Pet Stuff.

Seventy-one units ranging from 380-850 square feet may lease at about $1,200-$2,000 per month, developer Curt Gunsbury told the East Calhoun neighborhood last fall. Most units would have balconies, and the building would include a rooftop deck.

Enclosed parking for 37 vehicles would stand underground and on the ground level, with parking access through the alley.

“We think it obviously fills a really important need for more housing,” Gunsbury said.

Susie Goldstein of the East Calhoun Community Organization said neighbors agreed the site is the right place for new development, but raised concerns about the project height and its impact on parking and alley traffic.

“That block is going to be really difficult to park on,” she said.

The Planning Commission unanimously approved the project on consent, without discussion. The commission approved a conditional use permit to build above four stories (56 feet) allowed by right on the site. In recommending approval, city staff said the height is compatible in scale to the surrounding area. A nearby six-story project under construction at 3041 Holmes Ave. will create nine luxury condominiums.

The developer expects to break ground in April and finish construction in the summer of 2018.