Despite concerns from area residents, construction of a new senior housing complex took a step forward earlier this month.
Dewitt City Council on Oct. 8 voted unanimously to rezone a 6-acre vacant lot on South DeWitt Road near Arbor Meadows Drive for the project. The plan had been previously approved by the city’s planning commission.
DeWitt resident Matt Shields said he had submitted a letter and spoke during the planning commission’s meeting, but still felt as if he hadn’t been heard.
“I believe there to be some inconsistencies between the city’s master plan and the proposed development,” Shields said. “I was a little bit disappointed that there was little discussion or response to some of the public comments.”
Resident Susan Nelson said she hoped everyone’s concerns would addressed.
“I just feel like there has been a general lack of honesty,” Nelson said. “Hopefully that will be taken into account when they make their next decision.”
Councilman David Hunsaker said the zoning was conditional and that “everything down to where the trees would be planted” would be in the benefit of all the residents in that area.
“I don’t believe that this will negatively impact property values of this area or the adjacent areas,” Hunsaker said. ”I talk to people every day that want to move to our community and their biggest concern is that they can’t find a house to buy, and when they do it gets bid out from underneath them.”
The city’s lawyer, Brian Goodenough, agreed with Hunsaker.
“This special zoning is dependent on the planning commission,” Goodenough said. “The zoning rights can be revoked if at any time the conditions that we gave them aren’t being met.”