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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


The Junction at Iron Horse focuses on working with neighbors

Ryan Revock
Ryan Revock / Arizona Daily Wildcat Keri Lazarus Silvyn, an attorny for the developers of Junction at Ironhorse, addresses the concerns of the Ironhorse Neighborhood Association at their meeting Tuesday evening in Tucson, Ariz. The Junction at Ironhorse is a student orientated apartment complex that is supposed to begin construction during the summer.

The developers of an off-campus student housing complex have agreed to numerous changes based on urging by the Iron Horse Neighborhood Association.

The Junction at Iron Horse, a student housing complex, will now offer 232 beds instead of 297.
The complex will be four stories tall, not five, and it will not include balconies on several-street-facing sides of the complex. Developers will also construct a basketball court that will be constructed in Iron Horse Park and refurbish Empire Market and Empire Laundry.

There will also be a market analysis conducted two years after the complex receives its Certificate of Occupancy, according to an informational packet provided at a meeting last Tuesday.

The changes are made in compliance with standards set by the Iron Horse Neighborhood Association, according to the packet.

“I think it is a constantly evolving process so as they [Junction developers] present other issues, the neighborhood will have input on that as well,” said Mike White, Iron Horse Neighborhood Association president.

According to the packet, The Junction at Iron Horse developers proposed a plan in 2011 that had 200 bedrooms and a three and four-story design.

However, the proposal became unfeasible due to a culvert — a water drain — under the site, which caused the developers to increase the size of the complex, said Keri Lazarus Silvyn, an attorney for the developers. The apartment complex had to be increased in size to compensate for the cost of constructing the complex with the culvert on the land.

Construction is estimated to begin this summer, Lazarus Silvyn said. The developers are still waiting to receive the building permits from the city.

The neighborhood association will be working with Ernie Duarte, the City of Tucson Development Services Department director, to enforce the terms of agreement between the developers and the neighborhood association, according to White.

Although the City of Tucson does not need to receive approval from the Iron Horse Neighborhood Association before granting the developers the building permits, according to Duarte, the city does take into consideration the “response and feedback” from the neighborhood association before making decisions.

The neighborhood association is still concerned with student behavior, and hopes developers will include a code of conduct clause in the Junction resident lease agreements, White said.

The neighborhood association doesn’t want to see the Junction at Iron Horse become a “District on Fifth type of situation with loud parties and bad traffic,” White said.

The District on Fifth is a student housing complex in the West University neighborhood that has dealt with issues due to noise from traffic and partying since it opened last summer.

Meetings between the neighborhood association and the developers of the Junction at Iron Horse will continue on a regular basis, even after the construction of the apartment complex.

“I think we have had really great participation from the City Council,” said Erika Mitnik-White, Iron Horse Neighborhood Association treasurer. “They have really helped our neighborhood a lot with the process and the neighborhood has really come together around this issue and we have just seen a lot of good work on it.”

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