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Residential/Storage Condos Proposed at Utah and 18th Ave.

A vacant, triangular-shaped parcel at the southeast corner of Utah Street and 18th Avenue in Sturgeon Bay would be used to build 15 part residential/part storage condominiums for weekend visitors to live in under a proposal presented Jan. 17 before the city Plan Commission.

Ryan Polzin of Peshtigo, who has an option to purchase the property, has requested rezoning the 2.78-acre site from single-family residential (R-1) to two-family residential (R-3).

His plan to construct what would be called “Boat House Motor Condos” would involve a multi-residential development with up to four-unit buildings so that the condominiums would have plenty of storage space to accommodate those who want a weekend home in Door County with space to store boats.

Erik Vandervest, who is partnering on the project with Polzin, said the buildings would use “high-end materials.”

“You’re coming right over the [Bayview Bridge and] it’s going to be in the view of the public’s eyes, so we want it to be in the aesthetics of what Sturgeon Bay and Door County is,” Vandervest said.

(From left) Erik Vandervest and Ryan Polzin appear Jan. 17 before Sturgeon Bay’s Plan Commission to discuss their proposal to build 15 residential/storage condominiums at the southeast corner of Utah Street and South 18th Avenue. Photo by Kevin Boneske.

He said the motor condos have become popular for car and boat enthusiasts and would fit the area very well for those who want to own those units and stay for the weekend.

Commission members spoke favorably about developing the project at that location.

“From what I’ve seen of your concept, it strikes me as being nicely laid out,” said District 2 alderman Dennis Statz.

Vandervest said the units wouldn’t be developed like cookie-cutter pole buildings.

“We would want these buildings to almost look individual,” he said. “They’ll look uniform together, but bring in different colors of the buildings, different roof lines [and] windows above the doors.”

Polzin said the units, for which the amount of living space is undetermined at the time, would be sold as a completed space rather than a shell for the owners to finish at a later date.

“Our thought was to complete them, turnkey, right away,” he said. “That’s why we’re saying we’re a little undetermined as far as the living space. You don’t want to make the living space too big, because it defeats the purpose of the boat storage, and you have to have that room underneath for the trailer and so forth, so the living area is going to be rather small.”

Polzin said the larger units would be about 30 feet by 50 feet.

Mayor David Ward, who chairs the commission, said the condition of the road along South 18 Avenue, where one of the project’s exits would be, needs to be improved.

“There would need to be some city investment and some consideration [to improving the road], because you wouldn’t want your folks going over 3-foot potholes,” he said.

Polzin said the price the units would sell for has yet to be determined.

The commission, which had the project on its agenda for an informal discussion, agreed to hold a public hearing on the rezoning request at its Feb. 21 meeting.