Champaign residents relieved by changes to Latitude Development

Champaign -- After months of debate, an out-of-state developer is listening to complaints from Champaign residents and changing his original plans for a new apartment complex in a historic neighborhood. When developer Chase Sorrick of Indiana-based Investment Property Advisors announced plans for a four-building apartment complex that would spill into Champaign's Fifth & Hill neighborhood, residents voiced their concerns that the so-called Latitude Development would threaten the characters of their community. However, they are now on board with the project after some conversation led to some changes.

The original plans called for two buildings on University Avenue, between Wright and Fifth Streets, and another two on Park Avenue.

However, it was the two buildings on Park Ave. that worried residents. So three weeks ago, Sorrick met with community members to calm their fears, and after the meeting, he scrapped the two buildings on Park, expanded the two on University, and resubmitted new plans to the city.

"We were all surprised," said Claudia Lennhoff, the executive director of the Champaign County Health Consumers, the group that oversees the 5th & Hill Neighborhood Rights Campaign.  "But in a very pleasant way. And [we're] very gratified and grateful and the residents plan to publicly support his application for this development."

They will do that when Sorrick presents his plan to the Champaign Planning Commission on May 21st. After that, the proposal will go on to the city council for approval, and if it gets the go-ahead, developers want to start construction on the Latitude Development this summer.
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