Residents oppose Long Hill Ave condos

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The empty seats in the City Hall auditorium filled as the Planning and Zoning Commission meeting began.

Residents, local and state officials showed up to City Hall objecting to the proposed construction of 18 condominiums on a 4-acre property in the residential area of Long Hill Avenue.

The condos would be built on what is currently a single-family property at 405 Long Hill Avenue owned by Jack and Josephine Gaida. The proposal calls for three buildings of six units each in a development called Brookview Heights.

Each condo would have two parking spaces. Dominick Thomas, attorney for the applicants, said one of the condos would cost about $300,000.

Neighbors of the proposed site told the Planning and Zoning Commission March 24 that they fear an increase in traffic and a decrease in open space in the area if the proposal is approved.

No one in attendance was in favor of the plan, but two letters were submitted to the Planning and Zoning Commission expressing support.

State Rep. Jason Perillo, a former member of the P&Z Commission, said the plan isn’t a good fit the neighborhood.

Perillo also pointed out that there are currently 18 houses on the entire stretch of Sylvan Drive, yet this plan proposes 18 units on less than 4 acres of land.

Third Ward Aldermen Lynn Farrell and Board of Aldermen President John Anglace opposed the plan.

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President of the Board of Aldermen John Anglace

Anglace said he believes the project is based solely off of the pursuit of profit and residents should not be forced out of their lifestyle, into “congested” conditions.

Stephanie Kampler of Long Hill Avenue started an online petition with that has gathered some 100 names and a physical petition which she said has received nearly 300 signatures opposing the project.

Commissioner Jimmy Tickey suggested to Thomas that a traffic study be conducted and presented for the board on April 12.

P&Z Chairman Ruth Parkins encourages residents to attend the meetings and voice their stance on proposals because without their input the board isn’t aware of an opposition. The Public portion will continue at the P&Z’s next meeting on April 12.

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