South St. Louis County News

St. Louis Call Newspapers

South St. Louis County News

St. Louis Call Newspapers

South St. Louis County News

St. Louis Call Newspapers

Boundary Commission votes to deny Grantwood Village annexation request

Panel scheduled to OK summary of decision.

The St. Louis County Boundary Commission last week denied Grantwood Village’s request to annex the former Busch property along Gravois Road.

Commissioners on March 15 voted 7-0, with one member absent and three vacancies, against the proposal.

Grantwood had hoped to annex nearly 100 acres of unincorporated land south of Gravois Road. The property once was owned by Andrew Busch and is across from Grant’s Farm.

It generally is bounded by Gravois Road, Musick Road, the Affton Athletic Association, Lakeshire subdivision, Sunset Memorial Park, McNary Road and other unincorporated subdivisions.

The area incorporates several zoning districts, including mixed use development, residential, non-urban and some flood-plain. It is mostly undeveloped.

The commission was scheduled to consider approval of a summary of its decision when it met Tuesday — after the Call went to press.

Villagers wanted the property within the Grantwood’s jurisdiction to have some control over future development of it. They contended the annexation was a logical extension of the village’s boundary.

But the county argued that it was in a better position to both manage the area and plan for its future development.

Grantwood residents rallied a few years ago against a proposed development of the property they felt was unsuitable.

In November 2005, Busch agreed to sell his property to the Gravois Co. — a collection of local home builders — for $23.6 million, or $250,000 per acre. The County Council subsequently adopted two ordinances in May 2006 approving zoning and a planned-environment unit, or PEU, on Busch’s property for a 439-home subdivision, the Villages at Grant’s Trail.

A group of villagers sued the county the following month, contending the PEU ordinance would only allow for a maximum of 363 homes at the site of the Villages at Grant’s Trail instead of the planned 439.

The suit halted the sale of the property to Gravois Co., and the developer eventually backed out of the project.

Busch later sold part of the land to Erickson Retirement Communities, which in 2008 received county approval for its plan to construct 1,500 units on more than 80 acres of the property. But the developer later filed for bankruptcy and was sold, effectively killing plans for the proposed retirement community.

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