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Common council approves "pocket" neighborhood plan

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Could we see “pocket neighborhoods” pop up around South Bend?

Developer Patrick Matthews is looking to start a new trend on the city’s north east side by creating a neighborhood inside a neighborhood.

Monday, South Bend’s Common Council gave Matthews the greenlight to move forward with his plans, following months of back and forth with the Area Planning Commission and neighbors.

“While we’re not necessarily where we would like to be in terms of an end result, there is goodwill on both sides still and that’s the important thing to making this project work,” said neighbor Kevin Dreyer.

Folks who live nearby aren’t too fond of seeing their area densely populated.

The original proposal called for 39 homes to be built on a 3.5 acre site.

The developer reduced the number of homes to 26 after talking to neighbors.

“Ultimately we have a great project that we’re satisfied with,” said Matthews. “I think when you run through this process or any negotiations you got compromises on both sides and hopefully it’s something the neighborhood and developer can live with.”

Over the next couple of years, more than two dozen homes will be built on the 1300 block of Ironwood.

Neighbors say the now-leveled lot used to be the home of a church and wooded area.

Many of them are disappointed in the lack of green space.

As part of the compromise, the developer has committed to planting several trees around the complex.

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