Topeka’s Potwin Place community will get six new loft apartments.
The mayor and city council of Topeka voted 9-0 Tuesday night, with Councilwoman Christina Valdivia-Alcala absent, to change the zoning in a way that will allow Mark Burenheide’s Potwin Place, LLC, to create those apartments at market price in the former education wing of Potwin Presbyterian Church, 400 SW Washburn Avenue.
The church, built in 1924, no longer needs the space for that wing, which was built in 1958.
The loft apartments have high ceilings and sloping ceilings.
OK Tuesday’s zoning change will allow for the conversion of the wing and will also allow the neighboring property at 500 SW Washburn Ave. to be used for associated parking.
Discussion of the proposal at Tuesday’s meeting was minimal. Councilman Spencer Duncan asked if the building that currently stands on the property at 500 SW Washburn Ave. would stay and learned that it would.
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Topeka mayor and council approve annexation of school property
The mayor and council also voted 9-0 Tuesday to annex a 93.05-acre tract of property on the northeast corner of SW 29th and Auburn Roads.
The land will become the site of a new middle school for $437 Auburn-Washburn.
The move was requested by the Auburn-Washburn Board of Education for $437, where voters last April approved a $145 million bond issue that included $64 million to go and build a middle school.
In addition, the mayor and council voted 9-0 to arrange for the affected property to be zoned to allow for development as a middle school, with public road access.
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“With $500 and No Bank Support”
During a meeting that took place on Valentine’s Day and was shorter than usual, lasting about 85 minutes, the mayor and the council also proceeded to:
• Met in closed executive session for approximately 45 minutes to discuss personnel matters relating to a specific individual employee, whose name has not been disclosed.
• I heard Mayor Mike Padilla read a proclamation declaring February 14, 2023 as “Haus Janitorial Service Day” in Topeka while acknowledging owner Randy Wheat, who according to the proclamation opened that black-owned business on February 14, 1993,” with $500 and no bank support”.
• I heard Padilla commend the city’s efforts to make its police force more diverse by partnering with the Hi-Crest Church Fellowship and Sunflower Community Inc. to offer an informational meeting on February 25 and a mentorship session on March 11 at the church, 455 SE Golf Park Blvd., to help prospective candidates prepare for the city’s police officer exam on March 25. Participants will be able to ask questions and learn about the department’s application and examination process.
Contact Tim Hrenchir at [email protected] or 785-213-5934.