A 2,000-foot-long strip of road between
South Lamar Boulevard and Old Taylor Road could see more than
400 new apartments and condominiums in the near future.
Two major developments planned for Frontage
Road will come before the Oxford Planning Commission Monday,
and another smaller apartment project is slated to follow close
Commissioners are scheduled to consider
whether to allow Pontotoc County developer Jim Mogridge to build
up to 239 units as condominiums.
His 45-acre site just west of Cambridge
Station apartments is already zoned RB, so he could build as
many as 261 units without special approval. The special exception
he's requesting only relates to the ownership arrangement, and
the planning commission will have a chance to review the site
The new development would go in across
the street from Mogridge's 32-unit Oxford Station development
currently under construction.
Bo McRee, broker with College Town Realty,
said this morning the new development will mirror the first
one, with prices starting around $200,000. Condos in the original
Oxford Station have sold between $225,000 and $350,000, he said.
"So far, we've had mostly alumni
doctors, lawyers, cotton farmers," he said.
For many buyers the condos will be second
homes, but some will make it their primary residence.
McRee said the development will save as
many trees as possible on the wooded site, and will include
a walking path and bike trail.
The developer hopes to begin work on the
new project in early summer, pending city approval, McRee said.
At the opposite end of Frontage Road, Guy
Turnbow Jr. is seeking to rezone a 4.6-acre parcel next to Days
Inn from Highway Commercial (HC) to Multi-Family (RC).
The area is part of a 13.7-acre tract,
the rest of which is already zoned for multi-family use.
No plans for a development have been filed
with the city's Planning and Development Office, and Turnbow
could not be reached for comment on the rezoning.
If the area is rezoned, a developer could
put nearly 200 apartments on the property, City Planner Colbert
In a written recommendation to planning
commissioners, Jones said the rezoning was reasonable since
city development policy is moving toward mixing compatible uses
like commercial and high-density residential.
In the coming months, Frontage Road will
also be host to a new 13-unit rental development by Larry Butts
on 2.4 acres beside the city's electric substation at the corner
of Old Taylor Road.
Butts purchased the property from the Oxford
Electric Department in March 2003, but at that time the city
withheld about an acre next to the substation in case it wanted
to extend Mimosa Drive.
The need to create that new route between
Old Taylor Road and South Lamar Boulevard may become more urgent
when the new developments get underway.
In his recommendations for the proposed
projects, Jones prescribed setting aside right-of-way space
behind them for the Mimosa Drive extension.
Traffic was a key concern for neighbors
who opposed the original Oxford Station development in early
2002, and fast drivers on Frontage Road warranted the construction
of Oxford's only two speed bumps on a city street.
Traffic problems on Frontage are compounded
by near-impossible left turns onto South Lamar towards the Square.
But a new project proposed by the Mississippi
Department of Transportation could address the problem by replacing
the stoplights and stopsigns at either end of the South Lamar
bridge with two European-style roundabouts.
The north roundabout just south of the
Shell and BP stations would include the ramps exiting and entering
the westbound lane of Highway 6. The south roundabout would
include the opposite ramps, as well as Access Road and Frontage
Road, in a six-way circle.
The project could begin as early as the
summer of 2005.