A combination apartment complex and commercial development is slated for southeast Independence.

The City Council last week unanimously approved rezoning and a preliminary plat for a vacant 27-acre plat off Little Blue Parkway and Valley View Parkway, across from Corner Cafe restaurant and Children's Mercy East hospital. Propper Construction Services out of suburban St. Louis plans to build 10 24-unit apartment buildings in one portion, while a second portion would have restaurants and small retail businesses and an office building.

“This is a wonderful project. We're glad to have them do this in Independence,” Council Member Scott Roberson said. “I know they had choices, several places to go, but they chose Independence.”

City documents do not list a project cost, though the project does not include tax incentives. According to city documents, Propper hopes to have the apartment complex constructed in 18 to 24 months and the other parcels constructed three to four years.

The Planning Commission unanimously approved the project last month.

The 27 acres had been rezoned to C-2 commercial in 2005 as part of the Trinity Woods project on the southeast quadrant of Interstate 70 and Little Blue Parkway. Construction since then – Corner Cafe, Drury Inn, Children's Mercy East and Cedarhurst Senior Living – has all been north of Valley View Parkway. The rezoning applied to just the southern 15 acres, where the apartment complex will be constructed.

Plans call for a private clubhouse and pool, amphitheater and dog park with what will be called Trinity Woods Apartments. A new roadway, Grace Avenue and 45th Street, is to be put in between the intersection at Valley View Parkway and Heartland Drive (which runs between Little Blue Parkway and Valley View Road). Developers also plan to extend Valley View Parkway to Valley View Road.

The commercial portion will be north of the new road and the residential portion south of it. Plans do not call for any direct access to Little Blue Parkway.

“We intend to create a residential community,” Tim Breece of Propper said. “We're open to the idea of trails because that's good for our residents.”