Residents Speak Out Against Rezoning Petition

By: Summer Knowles
By: Summer Knowles

December 13, 2005

A petition to rezone one Belmont neighborhood has some local residents up in arms.

The petition must first be signed by City Council and if it is, developers will be able to build 10 single-family homes on the property. The line is located at the intersection of Carlton Avenue and Chestnut Street. The current land contains 3 houses and 2 sheds, which causes the current residents to ask two main questions: How exactly are they going to fit the new homes on this land, and why so many?

"It's just getting too developed too quickly," said resident Meredith Moneymaker.

"It's a small area and if you look at the lots, it's small to start with and to take another lot that's intended for two families and make ten families, that's an awful lot," said resident Clyde Cooper.

Cooper is one of many residents who oppose putting ten new homes on the corner of Carlton Ave. and Chestnut St.

"When you start clustering houses in an area that was only intended for one or two family units, next thing you know you've got four, five, six, seven families where it was just going to be one or two, it kind of changes the atmosphere," said Cooper.

Residents want to preserve a neighborhood they describe as quiet and peaceful.

"My children were raised here and my oldest daughter is 55 years old, and back when they were raised up, they could ride their bicycles up and down the streets," said another resident.

"Most of the homes here are owner occupied, so when you start having apartments and things like that, people don't take care of things as well as if they owned it," said Cooper.

The city's planning commission says it will consider the residents' concerns before making it's recommendation to City Council.

"When we evaluate a petition like this, we try to look at it in an objective manner," said Neighborhood Planner Brian Haluska. "We take citizen input, I've spoken to several residents out there about the parking issues, we evaluate the application based on the merits of the application."

Residents will have a chance to voice all of their concerns to City Council. That meeting will be on either January 10th or February 14th. The planning commission and the developer are scheduled to have a preliminary meeting Thursday at 6:30 p.m. in the City Council chambers.

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