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Feature Stories for December 14, 2000

The STAR is distributed every Thursday.  
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Disagreement heats up cold Plan meeting 
Hawk Development Rezone proposal gets plan pass

By Sean McNab 
Star Staff Writer

CROWN POINT - With the first blizzard of the season taking place Monday, some residents tried to heat up the situation with their disagreement with the rezoning of a town home development juxtaposed between the northern ends of Timothy Ball Elementary School and the NIPSCO sub station off of Summit Street. 
    "We are proposing a gated community of approximately 100 units on this approximate 26 acres of land," explained Jack Slager, the president of Hawk Development. 
   Upset that the townhomes will have a negative effect on adjacent homeowners, residents felt that Slager had the rezoning planned long before this public hearing on the issue ever took place. 
    Plan President Patt Patterson responded to the allegation by saying, "We (the members of the commission) can't predispose or suppose what a developer might do with his land." 
    The rezoning from R-1 single family to R-3 multi-family encompasses a total of 25.98 acres of which 6.95 acres will be used for dwelling. 
    The members of the board motioned for a vote on the findings of fact as to whether this rezoning would have an adverse affect on the surrounding areas or whether it would decrease the property value of the adjacent homeowners. The board felt it did not and passed the rezoning request 4-1. 
    In other news, Thomas Fleming petitioned for a primary subdivision plat approval of Unit 2 of Penn Oaks. 
    The proposed area will include 60 single family residences on the 1300 Block of East South Street. 
    Fleming explained that a landscape buffer would be placed between the back yards of the residences so that the buildings of Woolahan Lumber to the north would be shielded. 
    Moreover, Fleming is planning to create a contract between the developer and the homeowner that all utility services will be placed homogeneously throughout the subdivision to provide easier access. 
    The petition was unanimously passed 5-0.


Commissioners pass juvenile center pacts
Salesian school property deed goes, in part, to Sergio Urquiza

By Andrew Steele 
Star Managing Editor

CROWN POINT - County Commissioners approved contracts last week for the construction of the juvenile center addition at the government complex on North Main Street. 
   Gough Construction of Crown Point will build the addition at a cost of about $17.4 million. 
    Before approving the contract, commissioners eliminated two aspects of the project that will save about $124,000. 
    The elimination of skylights in the lobby will save $67,000. The change was approved despite the recommendation of juvenile court Judge Mary Beth Bonaventura and the project architects to keep the skylights because of the natural illumination they would provide. 
    The lobby will be illuminated by electric lights only. 
    Commissioners also approved a change in the climate control instrumentation. Savings will be $57,000. 
    In other business, commissioners voted to turn over the deed for a portion of the Salesian school property in Cedar Lake to Sergio Urquiza. 
    The move came on the orders of Jasper County Superior Court Judge J. Philip McGraw, in whose court a dispute over the property was scheduled to go to trial. 
    The property was auctioned earlier this year as one of the tax-delinquent properties the county has confiscated and auctioned. 
    At the January auction of the Salesian property, Urquiza bid $340,000 for the land and buildings, but another bidder, Damir Missbrenner, claimed to have had his final, and higher, bid ignored. 
    Urquiza also owns another 11-acre parcel of the Salesian property that he purchased at auction last month. 
    He also owns another Cedar Lake property, the old Centier Bank building on Lakeshore Drive, which he plans to turn into a banquet hall and restaurant.



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