Harker Heights City Council members at a Tuesday workshop directed city planners to develop an ordinance that would allow incentives for home construction in the northern part of the city.

One year ago, the City Council and residents expressed a desire for the city to explore infill development in parts of the north and southern side of the city. The result was the creation of a new zoning district R1-I, or a single infill dwelling district.

“The term infill basically means looking throughout developed areas of town and searching for those one or two lots that were never built on for whatever reason,” according to Joseph Molis, director of planning and development.

This year, the staff has met with the planning and zoning commission, local developers and citizens who have expressed the desire for two-family (duplexes) dwellings on smaller lots.

The staff believes having two-family dwellings on small lots provides another option for infill development in the city. This would also allow for the rezoning and redevelopment of manufactured home parks by allowing a higher density replacement for manufactured housing.

Molis said, “On Tuesday, we discussed the new zoning district that would allow developers to build duplexes on smaller lots. We have a lot of older lots on the north side of town that are too small for our current duplex zoning district.”

The council gave Molis and his staff the go-ahead to develop the ordinance on the north side of town, which will provide incentive for contractors.

“The second agenda item had to do with incentives that expire this month to build on lots in the north side of town,” Molis said. “My marching orders are to extend that expiration date for another year.”

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