Briefly Noted: Overland Park’s zoning codes create challenge for affordable housing developers

Overland Park has been using this image of a “cottage courtyard” in Seattle as an example of the kinds of small-scale development it’s looking into for the city.

Overland Park’s zoning codes create challenge for affordable housing developers. Restrictive zoning codes in Overland Park have made it challenging for developers to build affordable housing like duplexes, four-plexes, cottage communities and homes with shared driveways, the Kansas City Star reported last week. Meanwhile, the cost of renting or buying a home in Johnson County is rising above what full-time retail sales clerks, janitors or home health aid workers are able to pay, according to a report released this year by the League of Women Voters of Johnson County. Matthew Petty, a city planner and real estate developer in Fayetteville, Arkansas who has studied Overland Park’s housing market, said Overland Park needs to change its laws, offer assistance programs and create a system where developers of smaller scale, cheaper housing projects can see a return on investment. [Why doesn’t Overland Park have more affordable housing? Often the city won’t allow it — The Kansas City Star]

Man dies at Leawood shopping center Saturday morning. The Leawood Police Department is investigating after a man died at a shopping center early Saturday morning. First responders answered a 911 call for a medical emergency at 4:35 a.m. Saturday in the 12200 block of State Line Road. When they arrived, they found an unconscious male, started CPR and were unable to resuscitate him. Leawood police have begun an investigation to determine the cause of death. The exact cause is unknown at this time, but there is “no obvious safety risk” to residents in the area.