COLUMBIA, MO (KMIZ)
Officials are expected to allow for public comment at the Columbia City Council meeting Monday night at 7 p.m.
City Council is set to meet Monday night at Columbia City Hall. On the agenda, the annexation of Canton Estates Preliminary Plat is scheduled for an open discussion among citizens and officials.
Rob Hill, real estate developer, plans to build a 113 home residential development at East Gans and South Bearfield roads, near the Gans Creek Wild Area.
Friends of Rock Bridge Memorial State Park have concerns about the development and how it would affect the environment near the park and Gans and Clear creeks. Many residents want to protect the area from over-development. Residents were concerned about how the new development could pollute the area during the Columbia Planning and Zoning Commission meeting last month.
“And we just have a gem and a jewel here in the state park and especially in the Gas Creek wild area we need to protect it it’s important,", says, Kevin Roberson, President of Friends of Rock Bridge Memorial State Park.
Roberson has requested that the density for the homes should be decreased from what is projected. The development is set to have 1.7 houses per acre, a side of the development will drain into the park making a lesser density of .67 houses per acre. Roberson suggests the density to be lowered to one house per every 2.5 acres.
“So I’m hoping that the city council does exactly what the city’s done in the past and says we need to protect this, this is moving too fast and is not the right development for that area,", says Roberson.
Rob Hill the developer of Canton Estates says he wants to protect the park and Gans creek as well. As he's taken several measures in the planning process to be able to protect as much of the park as possible. As it's only asked for 7% of impervious surface for development, Hill has cut that in half in order to double the protection of the area.
“I’ve done this before I knew what the parks wanted then I conferred with the state park director on this development I’ve given them 4 times what they wanted previously, that’s 4 times the buffer to protect the park, we feel like that’s pretty huge,", says Hill.
Hill says he's lived near the park for about 15 years and loves the park as much as everyone else who is fighting against the development. Hill continues to work to do what he can to protect the park and bring more homes to Columbia.
The Columbia Planning and Zoning Commission held a public hearing on April 8 where the board voted the rezoning request and preliminary plat down 7 to 1.
City Council members will now have to move forward with the recommendation to deny the development or the decision to approve the development.
Council members will further discuss the development at the next meeting, which is scheduled for May 17 at Columbia City Hall.