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Planning commission votes against 216-unit apartment plan

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A 216-unit apartment complex is being proposed on Long Hollow Pike near the intersection of Vietnam Veterans Boulevard in Gallatin. SUBMITTED

A plan to add a 216-unit apartment complex on Long Hollow Pike near Vietnam Veterans Boulevard should not be approved by city leaders, according to a recommendation Monday by the Gallatin Planning Commission.

The project, which can still be approved by the Gallatin City Council, is being proposed on a portion of the larger 22.79-acre Hunter Pointe development that is located across from the Fairway Farms subdivision.

Prior to the vote, Planning Commissioner John Puryear said he felt traffic from the apartments would create a "public safety issue" in the area.

"This is going to have a tremendous impact on the traffic in that corridor, which is already a major problem," he said. "If you try to leave town in the mornings or if you're coming back in the afternoons, it's a nightmare through there."

Two residents who live near the proposed apartment project also spoke against the plan during a public hearing Monday.

Original plans for the property, submitted to the city in 2012, had shown more than 93,000 square feet of general retail and food service space had been planned at the site.

"There is really not a market out there for big-box retail, so we found this," ownership group representative Danny Hale told planning commissioners Monday. "This is an appropriate place for a use like this and it's an appropriate transition from retail and the bypass into residential on the other side of Long Hollow."

No additional changes to the overall development plans for Hunter Pointe are being proposed. In addition to the apartments, the project will also feature 28,000 square feet of general retail or hotel space and a Mapco gas station and car wash at corner of Long Hollow Pike and S.R. 386.

Construction would occur in phases, according to a preliminary development schedule submitted to the city's planning department last month. The apartments, if approved, would be finished in the spring of 2019 with the entire project begin completed in 2020.

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