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"Autumn Ridge" gets final approval

A million dollar home development proposed for southern Woodbury got the City Council's OK Wednesday.

"Autumn Ridge" - previously dubbed "Woodbury Estates" got the green light, which means local developer Tim Thone will soon begin construction on 20 high-end, single family homes in the rural 61 acre parcel.

Located north of Glen Road at the southwest corner of Military Road and Radio Drive, the property is zoned rural estate in the city's land-use plan.

Each of the homes will have its own private water well and septic system since the city is not able to connect its water and sewer to the area, Woodbury Planner Eric Searles said.

One resident submitted concerns regarding the water wells and the overall look of Autumn Ridge.

"She raised concerns that larger homes may not fit the character of the neighborhood," Searles said, referring to Ingrid Hanson, who lives directly to the north of the proposed development.

Hanson also worried that the new water wells will draw directly from hers, however, engineers analyzed the plan and said that will not be the case.

"It's not anticipated there will be any issues," Searles said.

Since the properties will have individual septic systems, Commissioner Kay Hendrickson asked if the city had a risk management plan in place in case any of them cause groundwater contamination.

Searles said Washington County is the permitting agency and if environmental risks arise, property owners are asked to replace the systems.

In response to concerns that Autumn Ridge doesn't seem to fit the character of older neighboring properties, the developer will plant additional trees to tie in to the rest of the area, according to the plan.

Thone previously told the Bulletin the homes of Autumn Ridge will start at $700,000 and go up to $1 million-plus.

"No one has done this since Salem Meadows in 1980," he said. "I think there is a pent-up demand for acreage and custom homes."

Thone bought the land from the farmland owners in 2009, but said it wasn't the right time to start developing yet.

Now that the local economy has stabilized and plans for a nearby shopping center, Bielenberg Gardens, are coming together, Thone said the time is right.

The city asked Thone to change the name from Woodbury Estates to Autumn Ridge because there is already an existing senior facility that goes by "Woodbury Estates."

Thone will work with Custom One Homes to build the project.

Riham Feshir
Riham Feshir is a reporter and photographer for the Woodbury Bulletin. Her coverage includes Woodbury City Hall, Washington County Board of Commissioners and business news.  Follow Riham on Twitter @RihamFeshir for the latest updates.