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Staff photo by Mike Pare / A tract of land off Mountain Creek Road in Chattanooga is eyed to hold a new apartment complex.

A part of Chattanooga that's already a haven for apartment living may see even more units if a company wins a rezoning case this month.

About 220 apartments are proposed to be built on a 12.6-acre tract off Mountain Creek Road that's currently zoned single-family, according to a request by ASA Engineering.

The Chattanooga company is asking for zoning for the apartment complex, which preliminary plans say would consist of four buildings, each of which would be three stories tall.

Allen Jones of ASA Engineering said designs for the complex are currently being worked through. Also, he said there are meetings with neighbors taking place before he goes before the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Regional Planning Commission on Dec. 13.

The parcels at 1145, 1149 and 1157 Mountain Creek Road are owned by Charles Hassler and Forest Prosser, according to documents submitted to planners.

Despite row after row of apartment complexes on Mountain Creek Road, Jones said that it "seems to the case" that there's a demand for even more. He declined to say more about the project until the planning commission meeting.

Hawthorne at the W, the newest complex on Mountain Creek Road, opened about two years ago near the W Road. That 204-unit complex holds several four-story buildings.

Bill Raines of The Raines Group, which had listed the site for Hawthorne at the W, said the area is appealing because it's close to downtown and convenient for people who work in the central city.

The parcel also is near to not just Red Bank Elementary School on Mountain Creek but Red Bank Middle and High schools off Morrison Springs Road.

He said while Mountain Creek Road already has a number of apartment complexes, they're mostly older.

The proposed new complex would sit closer to Morrison Springs and not far away from a controversial plan where Pratt Land & Development had sought to build apartments and single-family homes on the former Quarry golf course.

In February, the Chattanooga City Council rejected the plan to develop that property into a 225-unit complex of apartments and single-family home sites.

Despite that project gaining approval from the planning commission in January, the city council voted 7-0, with one abstention, to reject the development on a 50-acre tract.

At the time, City Council Chairman Chip Henderson, whose district includes the Quarry property off of Reeds Lake and Mountain Creek roads, said the proposed apartments "are a deal breaker." Henderson said that more than 5,000 residents had signed a petition against Pratt's development and 98 persons raised their hands during the February city council meeting indicating they were opposed to that proposal.

"The reason there is so much opposition is that because you are trying to shoehorn something in here that is not designed to be here," Henderson told developer James Pratt.

Contact Mike Pare at mpare@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6318. Follow him on Twitter @MikePareTFP.

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