300+ Hyannis apartments take a step toward Cape Cod Commission agreement
A 312-unit apartment complex proposed for the former Twin Brooks golf course in Hyannis won a key victory Thursday.
A Cape Cod Commission subcommittee determined that the Emblem Hyannis apartments would be consistent with relevant goals of the Regional Policy Plan, except with regard to wetlands.
The group voted 5-0 to ask Commission staff to write a draft development agreement with LMC, the developer.
On wetlands, the subcommittee determined that, in this case, inconsistency with regional goals is necessary to provide much-needed housing, and that wetlands can be protected in other ways.
The project has drawn significant community debate, from both opponents and supporters. Some opponents have called for the land to be preserved in its entirety, as a Central Park-like amenity, while others have advocated for a smaller housing development that would preserve the rest of the land.
Public comment was not part of the meeting; the subcommittee previously held a series of public hearings. But some members of the group voiced their own concerns.
Elizabeth Taylor, a non-voting alternate, said the apartment complex should have a higher proportion of affordable units. And she criticized the developer’s response to complaints about the design of the buildings.
“These look like barracks still,” she said. “And I don't think that there is any sensitivity in the building design, and any action, to make it actually look like it's on Cape Cod and not somewhere else.”
Voting member Fred Chirigotis said traffic at the West End rotary remains a problem, and curb cuts onto Scudder Avenue could be reduced.
Once the Cape Cod Commission staff have written a draft agreement with the developer, the draft will come to the subcommittee for review.
“This is not a final — not a final in any way,” chair Harold Mitchell said. “It's just a draft.”
The project is also subject to an approval process with the Town of Barnstable.