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Greenwood annexes 36 acres for planned development

How They Voted

Greenwood’s City Council voted 5-0 Monday to annexed the unincorporated land. Rod Powell, position 2 council member for Ward 1, was absent from the meeting.

Source: Greenwood

GREENWOOD – Land the city approved for annexation Monday is planned for commercial and residential development.

The approximately 36 acres is on the northwest corner of Arkansas 10 Spur and US 71 adjacent to the city and consists of six parcels. It is owned by Jacob Burton of MJE Construction and is planned to be a mixed-use development called the Curve.

Mayor Doug Kinslow said Thursday the development at the main western entrance into Greenwood would be a tremendous asset to the city. He believes it would provide Greenwood greater diversity in where people can shop or live and draw many off US 71 who do not typically come into the city unless it is necessary for their commute.

The Curve is also expected to generate significant sales tax revenue, according to Kinslow.

“A lot of companies, whether they be fast food or a sit-down restaurant, they won’t even consider building outside the city limits, so that’s very important to get that annexed, which we’re doing,” he said.

Cheryl Garner, a Realtor with the Fort Smith-based Keller Williams Platinum Realty who’s working with Burton to market the property, said Monday all the land for the Curve was acquired by January. This allowed Burton to contract with various developments to build infrastructure on the property. Two of the Curve’s 20 lots as laid out in its plan are under contract.

Garner said the Curve will compete as a mixed-use development with Chaffee Crossing in Fort Smith and Barling due to the high amount of traffic the area receives. She said the Arkansas Department of Transportation’s traffic count for the thoroughfare in front of the Curve, US 71 between Cedar Valley Drive and Arkansas 10 Spur, is in excess of 29,000 vehicles per day.

The Curve’s infrastructure will be developed in phases as the lots are sold, according to Garner. Among the planned developments are multifamily buildings, multistory commercial buildings, restaurants, a high-end convenience store and a boutique hotel, as well as a new, larger facility for the Sebastian County Library in Greenwood. The plan also includes a water feature, a splash pad and an amphitheater. The Curve is planned as a walkable community.

Garner said Thursday MAHG Architecture in Fort Smith developed architectural controls for the Curve. It will also have a property owners association.

Greenwood’s annexation of the property will mean necessary city services, including water, sewer, fire and police protection, will be extended to it within “a reasonable period of time,” according to the annexation ordinance.

Sonny Bell, Greenwood’s planning director, said residents will be able to learn more about the annexation at a public hearing April 18, where the Planning Commission will be informed about the City Council’s decision to approve it.

Bell said the county will have its own public hearing to release the 36 acres on Wednesday. The property will be annexed into the city if no one files any legal action in the county Circuit Court to block it in the 30 days following the City Council’s approval.

Both the Arkansas Geographic Information Systems Office and Sebastian County approved the annexation prior to Monday’s meeting, according to Bell.

The City Council also voted Monday to table a proposal to purchase water rights for the annexed property from the James Fork Regional Water District, a rural water association, pending further discussion on the matter with the district. Bell said the city needs to acquire the rights to provide the property water and fire protection services.

The City Council afterward tabled a proposed agreement with Sebastian County through which the city would provide access to sewer and water services to the planned new Sebastian County Library. This would serve as the place matching contribution to the project, the agreement states.

Rene Myers, regional library director for the Scott-Sebastian Regional Library System, has said about 2 acres of the annexed property is the preferred site for the project. She has said the current county library in Greenwood, at 18 N. Adair St., lacks the space to allow the system to provide modern library services without having to limit itself. It was built in 1965.

County Judge David Hudson said Friday Burton intends to donate the land for the library project, although this has not happened yet. He told the county Quorum Court at its March 15 meeting that MAHG Architecture, which the county contracted for library concepts and preliminary building planning services, provided an estimated library project cost at $ 5.05 million.

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