Wagler proposes downtown apartments
By Mike Marturello | KPC News - The Herald Republican
What’s being billed as an upscale apartment complex targeting Trine University graduates and graduate students faces a special hearing before the Angola Board of Zoning Appeals on Monday.
The project is being proposed by Menno Wagler, Wagler & Associates, at 117 E. Maumee St., Angola. The name of the development is Maumee One and would be above current commercial spaces on the ground floor.
Wagler is seeking a variance to the city’s size requirement for apartments. The proposed 10 apartments would range in size from 476 square-feet to 654 square-feet. The city’s code requires a minimum of 800 square feet for an apartment. The second story of the building covers 6,575 square feet of space.
“He’s going to gut the whole place and it’s going to be real nice,” said Vivian Likes, Angola’s director of economic development and planning. “It literally would be the first apartment (complex) in the downtown.”
“They’re going to be nice units, I’ll put it that way,” Wagler said. What we’re looking at is designing apartments with the university in mind. Students, students’ parents.”
This sort of plan has been a recommended use for underutilized downtown second- and third-story space in the Angola Revitalization Master Plan and also the Downtown 20/20 plan from 2008 that resulted in the revitalization work on the Public Square and beyond.
The complex has its own parking lot to the north of the building. Wagler said the building will have a fire suppression system and a lot of security. There will be a keyless entry system, cameras in common areas and the like.
“We’re real concerned about is security,” Wagler said. It will be a smart system that can be controlled using a cell phone.
“We wanted to do this right or I didn’t want to do it,” he said.
Wagler said he needed the space to be configured in 10 apartments to make it economically feasible.
“Basically I need to have 10 units to make it viable,” he said. “There’s no wasted space and there can’t be.”
Each unit will be one bedroom, have a kitchenette and living space. There is a shared laundry area.
Wagler is hoping the project will lead to more downtown building owners developing housing in their upper stories.
“The town has been really great to work with. I think it will be great for the downtown,” he said. “We’re really looking forward to doing this and putting money back into the community.”
Last year Wagler used a facade grant to help remodel the storefronts of the entire lower level of the property. The apartments will replace four office spaces on the second story.
Monday’s meeting starts at 6 p.m. in City Hall, 210 N. Public Square.