Sunday, June 21, 2009

The Mays Want to Bring High Density to Bells Bend While Attempting to Switch Their Own Street to Lower Density

Irony of local developers' ironies: the very same night this week that the May Town Center proposal is up before the Planning Commission once again for public hearing, CM Jason Holleman brings a request to the Commission by approximately 2 dozen Enworth Place and Ensworth Avenue property owners to change their current low-density zoning to even lower density. Two of those residents are Frank and Leon May, who reside on Ensworth Place, and who are the would-be catalysts of May Town Center sprawl across Bells Bend.

The existing zoning at Ensworth Place and Ensworth Avenue allows single-family homes and duplexes on a minimum of 40,000 sq. ft. lots. The proposed zoning that the Mays are advocating--for parcels on which their own homes and those of their immediate neighbors sit--would eliminate duplexes from the formula and reduce density to .93 dwelling units per acre on a minimum 40,000 sq. ft. lot. They seem to want to keep developers in check where they live.

Metro Planning staffers are once again siding with the May family in a zoning proposal but for entirely different reasons this time around. This time they intend to protect the current character of the area by selectively applying this rationale:
This 48 acre area is an established, low density residential development with predominantly single-family residences.
Keep in mind that a little later on Thursday evening's agenda, the Commission will be discussing the planners' endorsement of the May family's attempt to convert historic, lowest-density farmland into high-density, urban, multi-use, car-cultured development of substantially more than .93 units per acre. I guess protecting the character of Bells Bend doesn't matter quite as much to Metro Planning since the Mays don't live there.

However, I doubt that any Metro planner will be considering the inconsistencies of the evening. They'll no doubt see it as all part of the big plan.

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