SPRINGFIELD — Residents sharing their thoughts and concerns on one of the most quickly-developing areas of town: Galloway township.
Businesses and apartments have been popping up over the last few months along Lone Pine Avenue, much to the chagrin of many homeowners in that area.
Last fall, some residents there were up in arms about over-development in the area, which is centered around the beauty of nature.
Before development continued, the city put a 270-day delay on more rezoning so they could get public input like they did Thursday.
Recently Galloway has gotten a makeover, causing a clash between developers and residents. Springfield Senior Planner Olivia Hough says the city wants to make sure they can find common ground.
“The city is kind of acting as a mediator trying to get a lot of public engagement and trying to come up with some good solutions as we move forward. What development fits into the area and is sensative to the surroundings?” Hough says.
With maps and date presented for residents, they then were encouraged to indicate their top-five concerns or suggestions — which were laid out on lists.
Wendy Huscher of the Galloway Village Neighborhood Association says once apartments started popping up seemingly overnight, neighbors began to see issues that could arise if things kept trending that way.
“We’ve had complaints about things and how it’s too congested, it’s just claustrophobic. The airy, relaxed feel of Galloway was just going away,” says Huscher.
She says traffic already become an issue.
“The neighbors, do not like the median. They do not like the on-street parking that has come from the development. It’s very dangerous for us,” Huscher says.
But Huscher points out that their main concern from the start was — and still is — a potential 4-story apartment across from the park.
“What’s there is there, we just don’t need more apartments and we don’t need them across from Sequiota Park. For some reason I feel like the focus is being turned like we are against all of the apartments down the street,” Huscher explains.
As for what is down the street, Matt Wagner with Green Circle Projects — who is working on the Quarry Town development — says they are trying to keep people’s concerns in mind.
“We’re down there for all the same reasons people love that area, and we want to do our best to highlight those and make sure they’re taken care of,” says Wagner.
Huscher says they want to make sure people know they aren’t completely against developing businesses in that area, just no more apartments.
“It’s not that we don’t want development, it’s that we don’t want too much developement, and too much of one kind,” Huscher says.
The Galloway Neighborhood Association says they don’t feel they are fully supported by the City Councilman of their zone, Matt Simpson.
Simpson told me tonight he wants to make sure all parties are able to come to a compromise through these meetings.
They’ll hold another one in May, and you can also take a survey regarding these projects on the city’s website.
In June, the city will be presenting their draft reccomendations for additional Galloway developments.