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New townhome project proposedThe plan would cluster 56 units on High School Road East.

The homebuilder who created the Weaver Creek subdivision in Winslow wants to build 56 homes on the 10-acre Martin-Patterson tract on the northwest corner of Ferncliff Drive and High School Road.By clustering the units on the west side of the tract, away from Ferncliff, he hopes to defuse the kind of neighborhood opposition faced by the Woodland Village project farther north on Ferncliff.This is a case where higher density means less impact, said David Smith of Central Highland Builders. If we lowered the density, we would have to use much more of the land.Initial indications are that the project, dubbed Cornerstone, may indeed have satisfied the neighborhood.From what I can see, it looks like they have followed the rules, said Lois Andrus, an activist with the East Central Bainbridge Island Community Association, which vehemently opposed the Woodland Village project.I don't hear any neighborhood outcry against this project, she said.Plans call for seven buildings, each containing eight units with between 1,200 and 1,400 square feet each.We're aiming for roughly the same size as the Madison Cottages, he said. Smith said he and his partners are trying to decide whether the units will be two-story townhomes, with garages on the first floor - something like Winslow Mews - or whether they will be one-story flats serviced by elevators.The elevators make every unit accessible to senior citizens and handicapped, but they drive up the costs, Smith said.Smith said he is determined to hold prices under $250,000 for all units, with some selling for less. The buildings will be clustered on the westerly four acres of the property, all of which is zoned for eight units per acre. The easterly portion will be left empty, creating a 220-foot forested buffer between Ferncliff and the development.They will be tall, like the Mews or Courtyards on Madison, he said, but they will look different. Because the total number of units will be the maximum permitted for the entire parcel, the eastern portion will remain vacant in the future, Smith said.Smith said he hopes to have a hearing before the Planning Commission within the next 60 days.

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