Developer Mike Williams’ company is buying more than 64 acres owned by the city of Lebanon off US 42. The city changed its long-range plan and rezoned the land to reflect expectations it will be developed as an extension of Williams’ Highlands at Heritage Hill development. Staff photo by Lawrence Budd
Photo: Lawrence Budd
Photo: Lawrence Budd

Lebanon selling land to developer

In 2015, the city was close to selling the land on U.S. 42 to the developer of an adjoining farm, as part of a deal to bring the water service for a planned community to the city.

RELATED: Mason, Lebanon vie for sewer service

Ultimately the developer, Terra Firma, annexed into Mason after it secured the rights to provide water service to what is now the Ambleside Meadows planned community.

The city then optioned the land in November 2017 to developer Mike Williams as an extension of Highlands at Heritage Hill, the Cincinnati Homearama community he is developing on adjoining land just beyond Lebanon’s limits.

RELATED: Developer to option 65 acres from Lebanon for residential development

Earlier this month, Lebanon City Council authorized the city manager to sell the land to Williams’ company for $542,000, $38,000 less than previously agreed upon in the option.

“We’re still moving forward with that,” Williams said last week.

In exchange for the price reduction, the city will not provide road maintenance or snow removal to the development. The roads will be private streets.

Williams said the deal made “the most sense for the property,” because Lebanon was hesitant about providing the services. He said the money would be put in a fund to help the homeowners cover these expenses.

RELATED: Mason to annex 414 acres along U.S. 42

The land is in the city of Lebanon, but the Kings and Mason school districts, according to property records.

The council approved the sale of the land for mixed-use development on April 9 without discussion.

It was a part of a water-well field, being farmed, that the city decided to sell after contracting with Cincinnati for water service.

The proceeds go to the water fund, since water revenues were used to acquire it.

Williams plans 17 homes for “empty nesters” in the back section of the development.

MORE: Residents sue Warren County after approval of 60 homes

“We didn’t want any houses along 42,” Williams said, predicting the roads would be in this fall.

Lebanon optioned the land to Williams after changing its long-range plans for this land and 42 corridor between Lebanon and Mason.

Plans to expand an industrial park here were changed and the land rezoned.

Williams also plans commercial development on 4.7 acres on U.S. 42, north of Ambleside Measows.

He said there were no firm plans yet for this part of the project.

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