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Boone County Commission approves controversial development plan west of Columbia

UPDATE, 10:36 p.m.: The commission unanimously approved the development, saying it had no choice but to do so.

The commission voted in July to approve to rezoning request of the land, and required the developer to come up with a review plan for their consideration. The county's Planning and Zoning Commission approved that plan, making the commission's role "ministerial" in approving it, county counselor C.J. Dykhouse said.

Residents said they fear the development will kick off a series of other developments in the area. Many called on the county to work with the city on developing a west area plan, but county commissioners said the city's allowance of the neighborhood to hook up to its sewer system helped make the development happen.

ORIGINAL: The Boone County Commission is set to take up a residential development west of Columbia that has some neighbors concerned.

The 17-acre Perche Ridge subdivision would be built just north of West Gillespie Bridge Road and Coats Lane. Residents in the area have said they worry about increased traffic and worsened flooding in the area by Perche Creek if the development is built.

The Perche Creek Neighborhood Coalition, a group opposed to the current development plan, said commissioners should delay the vote until the county and the city of Columbia can develop a west area plan, which will help dictate and recommend certain developments in the area.

Jana Stephens, a member of the group, also said the commission should consider the development's impact to the environment. A statement released on Monday by the group said a large pond on the property could be classified as a protected water of the United States, putting it in federal jurisdiction.

"We believe that required environmental due diligence has not been observed by the developer," the statement said.

Federal rules call on a developer to obtain a permit before filling in protected waters. A developer must show "that steps have been taken to avoid impacts to wetlands, streams and other aquatic resources," according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

The commission meets Tuesday night at 7 p.m.

Article Topic Follows: Boone
boone county commission
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Lucas Geisler

Lucas Geisler anchors 6 p.m., 9 p.m. and 10 p.m.. shows for ABC 17 News and reports on the investigative stories.


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