MILTON-FREEWATER - The Milton-Freewater Planning Commission approved a conditional use permit Monday that will give seniors more housing options in the city.

The permit will allow Bill Ezell and Sam Brinker to construct four duplexes at 217 N.E. Eighth Ave. designed for independent senior living. "We are going to over-size the doors, have no steps, ramp everything and put grab bars in the bathroom," Ezell said. "It won't be equipped for the handicapped but it is equipped for the elderly."

Construction should start on the eight units later in March and be completed in four to five months, he said.

The site is about half a block away from a grocery and hardware stores and near churches, he said. "Everything they need will be right there so they don't have to drive if they don't want to."

Ezell's company, Bill Ezell Construction, will build the project.

"It's going to be a beautiful addition to this community," Ezell said.

The commission also granted a preliminary plat approval for 39 lot subdivisions east of Highway 11 between Elozora Street and Eastside Road. The lots are the first step of a residential subdivision planned by Horizon Project Inc., Jim Morris construction manager said. The lots are each about 7,500 square feet and when developed will probably cost about $140,000.

The group will sell the lots undeveloped or contract with buyers to build the house, he said. The cost of the developed lot would vary depending on the house built on it, he said.

Initial construction should start in June or July, he said. The subdivision is near the grocery and bank and somewhat secluded.

"It is off the beaten path and there isn't a lot of traffic through there," he said.

Since the project was in the preliminary stage, Morris said he did not have a definite figure of what an undeveloped lot would sell for.

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