The Charis House and subsequent Plan Commission meeting wrapped up about 8:40 pm tonight. Â Here’s a recap of the events.
One of the first things that was mentioned during the presentation of the site plan, was that the City is looking at the best way to deal with “de-watering” the area. Â The impression that I received was the City would be paying for this. Â Whether it was having a permanent pumping station built, or merely insuring that a temporary pump could be moved into the area as needed. Â If this is the plan, then for me the question becomes, “Why should the City have to pay for this?”
One piece of good news is that the huge billboard on the property, I don’t have the patience to search for a photo tonight, will be coming down soon. Â CBS’s lease has expired and will not be renewed – they will remove the billboard at their expense.
It was stated that numerous letters had been received by the Plan Commission in support of the project. Â When asked for a showing of hands of those speaking in favor and then those speaking in opposition, those opposed outnumbered those in favor 2 to 1.
If I had to sum it up the evening’s theme in one phrase, I’d have to say, “Why have Community Development Action Plans (CDAPs) if we’re not going to follow them.
Carolyn Devoe, an advocate, said that over 5,000 hours were spent by citizens to make sure that ordinances line up with CDAPs and further developing the CDAPs. Â She added,Â
…the manner in which you rule on this will give all CDAPs an indication of the manner of cooperation they may expect.
I wouldn’t be surprised if all of the Plan-It Allen! hadn’t been read into the record by the end of the night. Â Ok, perhaps I’m overstating it. Â But the majority of those speaking against cited some part of Plan-It Allen! or an individual neighborhood’s CDAP or vision statement.
Councilman Tim Pape spoke stating that Councilman Tom Didier could not attend the meeting, however he was also not in favor of the plan going forward. Â Councilman Pape in part said,Â
…the CDAPs are a deliberate decision to say that we have to say what works and fits with the long-term character of the community.
…Although there may be attractive developments and projects…in the long term, does it rob us of our character?
Dan Wire spoke about CDAPs and then proceeded to stack all of them on the table.
The Plan Commission meets next Monday to decide the Charis House site plan.