County Council subcommittee eyes vote on Oakville subdivision

Residents oppose 41 homes proposed near Oakville Elementary

Kevin O'Leary

Kevin O’Leary

By Gloria Lloyd

A County Council subcommittee is set to vote Tuesday on whether to recommend rezoning for a new subdivision next to Oakville Elementary School.

Following a public hearing of the Public Improvements Commmittee, or PIC, Feb. 2, the County Council members who comprise the subcommittee will meet to vote on the proposed subdivision at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 23, at the Administration Building, 41 S. Central Ave., Clayton.

Pinnacle Land Development hopes to build Grey Oaks Estates, a 41-home subdivision on 13.4 acres, including the Basler Tree Farm property and an adjoining site that currently has older houses on it.

In November, the county Planning Commission unanimously recommended approval of the plan. As proposed, lots would range in size from 6,000 square feet to 14,000 square feet, and houses would be single-story, one-and-a-half-story or two-story and sell for roughly $350,000.

Oakville is represented on the council by 6th District Councilman Kevin O’Leary, D-Oakville, who serves on the PIC and kicked the project to the panel in November. The PIC is chaired by 5th District Councilman Pat Dolan, D-Richmond Heights. Other council members on the panel are 2nd District Councilman Sam Page, D-Creve Coeur, and 7th District Councilman Mark Harder, R-Ballwin.

The Basler property, 2953 Yaeger Road, has operated as a tree farm since 1965 and as a nursery since 1985.

Two single-family houses are between the proposed subdivision and Oakville Elementary, but neighbors have pointed to the school as a key reason county officials should block the subdivision, citing traffic and safety concerns.

Neighbors opposed to the project have submitted a petition with 250 signatures against it to county officials and have formed a group against the proposal called Concerned Oakville Residents Engaged, or CORE.

The area has no sidewalks for children to walk on, and Yaeger Road resident Madonna Hassler said she recently had to pull a child walking to school out of the road so the child would not be hit by a car.

“I yelled out, I screamed, ‘Stop!’ and they didn’t stop,” she said. “I don’t want any child or any human being killed on this road because of a development of houses.”

Many children walk to Oakville Elementary with their parents, but school officials make sure the two children who walk unescorted get across Yaeger and Milburn safely, Principal Chad Dickemper told the Call.

The 112-foot cell tower that the subdivision will have to be built around compounds the problems with the project, neighbors said at the public hearing.

“If my wife was here, she’d say no sane person was involved in the planning of this subdivision,” said neighbor Tom Lane.