Plan Commission To Consider Public Comment On West Lafayette Downtown Plan

Oct 2, 2019

An architectural rendering of what State Street was designed to look like once the city completed its downtown overhaul.
Credit City of West Lafayette

West Lafayette developers are making progress on plans for Chauncey Hill Mall development. As new construction begins, local officials are going over comments received during last month’s public comment period.

Area Plan Commission member Ryan O’Gara, who is in charge of the plan, says they received some proposals for high-rises and other housing options.

He says the plan can provide a solution for Purdue University’s housing shortage.

"What’s feeding all of it of course is the student population growth and so I think as long as Purdue maintains that pro-growth policy, the breaks are not going to come on the new housing stock because it is needed in a sense," O'Gara says.

Purdue has struggled for years to meet student housing demands, but O’Gara says increasing housing stock in the Chauncey Hill area will also benefit other West Lafayette residents.

The Tippecanoe County Area Plan Commission will hear Wednesday the results of a public comment period about proposed changes to the development plan.

O’Gara says the Chauncey Hill area is ripe for development. With work already started on the Target at the corner of State Street and Northwestern Avenue, and other changes on the way, he says now is the time to make plans for the future – but those plans can change over time.

“Years from now if there’s interest in expanding it or altering it, that’s what amendments are for," O'Gara says. "And we can reopen that whole thing to the community again and do another land use plan to respond to the challenges of that future time period.”

O’Gara says that could include building more multi-unit apartment buildings, though he says the city will constrain where those may be built.