Construction at The Shops at Dakota Crossing has yet to restart and the proposal below may be the key reason why. I’ve always believed that opening Ft Lincoln Drive to the Shops next toLowes would not fix the traffic problem. The volume of Costco traffic would easily congest that portion of the road . The new Multi-Family Development shows a new and more functional layout for the Shops at Dakota Crossing. I’m not sure if this will be the official design, however, I was informed 3 weeks ago that the DDOT permit was not yet approved and this could be the reason why.
Previous Retail Proposal
The previous (or current) layout for the shops features a main street with the smaller retail buildings on one side of the street. It shows one large parking lot for Costco, and another large parking lot to serve the remaining shopping center. Costco traffic currently creates congestion along the main street which will only worsen with the opening of Lowes and the other smaller retail. Even with the second entrance from Ft Lincoln Drive, Lowes would create its own congestion essentially bringing traffic to a halt.
Current Retail Proposal ( As shown in the BZA Application for the Multi-Family Development)
The layout included with the BZA Application splits the smaller retail on two sides of the main street which is similar to proposals from 2006. This new layout isolates traffic for Costco, Lowes, and the other larger retail from the Main street. It also creates smaller parking lots for the smaller retail making it more walkable. In addition, it creates two separate exits from Route 50; one to the “Costco” Gas station and the other to the Main Street, which would also alleviate traffic congestion. I’m not sure if this is the official plan but I believe it is a much better layout than what’s currently designed. Also putting shops on two sides of the main street creates a more natural street scape and doesn’t look like a staged movie set.
New Residential Development Changes
Previous Residential Proposal
The previous Multi-Family Development Proposal is more of a juxtaposition than a revision to the current proposal and may leave some residents in the Villages feeling like they’ve been mislead when purchasing their home. The previous proposal featured a significant tree buffer with mature trees which creates a more natural separation for the new development which was a selling point to many residents when purchasing on CJ. Barney Drive. It also only featured 6 Apartment Buildings with 352 units and a awful parking lot around the perimeter. The previous development is a bad design however, the natural tree buffer made it palatable because no one would have to see it.
Current Residential Proposal
The current proposal indicates a much better traffic pattern and will now feature townhomes in addition to the apartments. The townhomes appear to be a NV Product which is a luxury home builder and parent company to Ryan Homes. They also feature both roof top and rear decks which would be a first in the community. The apartment look to be a garden style edition of the two Towers on Fort Lincoln Drive. They are horrid in my opinion and must be redesigned, they architecture is uninspired and is not of the same Architectural consistency of the townhomes. It looks like government housing next to luxury homes and is situated in the most prominent location. The natural tree buffer has been completely annihilated and will be replaced with new trees. The Wetlands is protected so the retaining pond and wild vegetation growth will remain. I’m sure the frogs, turtles and birds will be happy to know that. It also may worth noting that there is are no parks or open space associated with this development. All things considered I think its a good improvement on the original proposal.