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552-unit apartment complex planned at Walker golf course property COURTESY RENDERING

552-unit apartment complex planned at Walker golf course property

BY Thursday, April 01, 2021 09:50am

WALKER — Developers are planning a 552-unit apartment complex at the English Hills Country Club property in Walker.

The Walker Planning Commission recently approved a preliminary site plan for the project from Mark Avis of Redhawk Multifamily LLC, along with a rezoning request for adjacent property at 1470 Four Mile Road NW, which is part of the development plan. 

The rezoning request for the adjacent parcel from agricultural to high density residential will also need approval from the Walker City Commission. The developer also will need to file an application for property combination to join the site with the rest of the golf course and a final area site plan. 

The golf course property — north of I-96 between M-37 and Bristol Avenue NW — was rezoned to high density residential in 2003 when a developer proposed a previous multifamily project that never came to fruition. Planning documents show the golf course had reopened in previous years but closed again in 2020.

The project calls for about half of the apartments to be one-bedroom units, while 40 percent would be two-bedroom units and 10 percent would be three-bedroom units. The apartment buildings will take up approximately 30 percent of the two properties, which total 142 acres. The average unit size is 1,000-square-feet. 

Redhawk increased the size of some buffer areas and moved some aspects of the plans to accommodate concerns from neighboring communities, Avis told planning commissioners during a March 24 meeting.

“Post-COVID renters are seeking new communities with all these modern amenities, and they want open space. That is something that has always been there but is more prevalent now,” Avis said.

The developer’s planned amenities include a community clubhouse that can be rented for events, a pool, dog park and community garden. The main entrance to the development will remain along Four Mile Road. 

The developer also plans to donate a portion of the property at the southeast area of the site to the city of Walker to facilitate an expansion of the English Hills Park.

According to plans submitted to the city, the developer expects the proposed development and its mix of units to attract millennials, empty nesters and young families. The company designed the structures to resemble townhomes, and they include private entrances for each unit and garages for many units. 

The company expects average price points for the units to range from $1,400 to $1,500. 

English Hills Country Club, which opened in 1973, has attracted a range of developers over the years who have proposed alternative uses for the land, including a 660-unit residential development with a mix of housing types, as well as a Cabela’s retail store. 

Meanwhile, Illinois-based Stoneleigh Companies LLC also is planning to redevelop the former Lincoln Country Club in Walker into 462 housing units, as MiBiz previously reported. The proposed development at 3485 Lake Michigan Drive NW would have multi-family townhomes and single-family housing as well as retail and offices.

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