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Planned Neighborhood Development

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The city council will meet tonight to discuss a proposal to re-zone a football-shaped area of land along the B-line trail on the north side of the downtown area between 9th and 11th streets. The proposal, brought the council by local non-profit Habitat for Humanity, is to re-zone the area from residential to “planned neighborhood development”, so that Habitat for Humanity can build a subdivision with 35 single family homes. Currently, the land, which is owned by habitat for humanity, is zoned so that 50% of the trees on the property can be removed, but if the proposal is approved, Habitat for Humanity would be allowed to remove up to 64% of the trees on the land. The proposal states that the 36% of the property that would be required to remain wooded would be near the B-line trail and the railroad that borders the other side of the property. The area was clear as recently as the 1960s and the oldest trees on the property are the ones near the edges, which the proposal plans to retain. At the last city council meeting, residents of the area spoke out against Habitat’s proposal for a variety of rationales, ranging from the ecology of the area, to the view from the b-line trail. WFHB Correspondent Lauren Glapa spoke with Patrick Shay, development review manager for the city of Bloomington, and Martha Crouch, a resident of the neighborhood for 35 years, for today’s WFHB feature.

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