It has been a challenge, but Salemtown residents finally got the balance they demanded for months with the Metro Council approving the Planning Commission's recommendation of zoning for single-family homes on three of the six Salem Gardens properties. When the bill's time came up, Ludye Wallace merely moved to approve and the Council followed suit. All that is needed now is the Mayor's signature.
While the Salem Gardens group is definitely going to build three duplexes, the future status of the three single-family zoned properties is now up in the air and up to the owners. Two of the SFH properties have blighted triplexes owned by UP, LLC, which has said that it will build no SFHs in Salemtown. If they stand by those words, their options are to continue to manage the triplexes, to sell the properties, or to start the re-zoning request process all over (which would not be wise, given the neighborhood resolve and the Planning Commission and Metro Council strikes against them). The remaining SFH property is owned by Salem Gardens partners, who told Salemtown Neighbors that they would either look into the possibility of building a SFH or they would sell.
Ludye deserves some credit for finally coming through, but the real catalysts in this valuable win were all of the Salemtown Association members who volunteered to attend Metro meetings, to write council members, and to go door-to-door with a petition. Also, I am still amazed by the stunning response of the Planning Commission on behalf of the neighborhood. I honestly thought before their unanimous vote that our chances were remote. I think that the developers underestimated us, too. I am not sure that we would have won without their wholehearted support.
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