KDA homes received approval Tuesday from the Ashland Planning Commission for its application to build a multi-use 22,469-square-foot building on one of the vacant lots in the Falcon Heights Subdivision.
The building is proposed to have office and light manufacturing space on the first floor and 10 two-bedroom residential units on the top floor. These units are proposed to range in size from 814 to 1,094 square feet.
The application includes consolidating two lots into one for the building. The site is at the corner of Rogue Place and Russell Street, across the street from the former Ashland Railroad Yard, a vacant 20-acre parcel owned by Union Pacific that sits north of railroad tracks, across from Railroad Park.
The architects strategically designed the building to allow for a public outdoor plaza space on the front lawn, therefore the entrances on Russell Street are placed more than 20 feet back from the public right-of-way.
Mark Knox, the proposal’s developer, said placing the court yard in front of the building gives a larger public space for neighborhood events.
“It breaks up the monotony,” Knox said. “And it gives more purpose to it.”
Currently two of the seven lots in the subdivision are occupied, and now two have been approved for construction.
Ten parking spaces will be added to the parking lot, as well as bike parking.
The applicant has also agreed to update the landscaping in the area.
Knox said the goal is to have a bottom space that can adapt its functionality to an ever-changing market.
“If we’re lucky enough … there’s enough parking to allow for change and growth,” Knox said.
Commissioner Lynn Thompson said she loved the design, as did the rest of the commissioners.
Commissioner Michael Dawkins said he appreciates the way that area of town is shaping up.
“This has been sitting vacant for some years now,” Dawkins said. “I think there’s a nice standard in that area.”