PRAIRIEVILLE, LA (WAFB) - Some homeowners in Ascension Parish are taking their elected leaders to court to try to stop a new subdivision from being built.
Jamestown Crossing would be built near Highway 930 and Parker Road in Prairieville. Opponents say the Ascension Parish Planning and Zoning Commission broke the law when they approved it.
Development is nothing new to homeowners in Prairieville. It's one of the fastest growing areas in Ascension Parish, but that same slogan that once gave elected officials bragging rights has now landed them in hot water with some residents.
Kim Christy and Michael Latiolais are two of several people who live near the proposed Jamestown Crossing I and II subdivisions. "We don't have the infrastructure to support the unbridled growing," Christy said.
"Just fix the road you promise to fix. Fix it," Latiolais said.
People who live near the proposed sites say Highway 930 is not built to handle the plans, which call for more than 100 new homes. Concerned citizen, Jeff Pettit, says this time, the parish went too far. "They broke the law," Pettit said.
According to Ascension Parish subdivision regulations, "no major or minor subdivision may be developed on any street which is less than 18 feet in pavement width." Measurements taken along Highway 930 reach only 17.3 feet. "If we had safe roads to travel on, we'd have no problems with development," Pettit said.
While WAFB was there, our cameras captured a few trucks struggle to stay in their lanes. Navigating curves appeared to be especially challenging. Residents say the same thing happens when school buses pass. Safety, traffic, and drainage, they say, are all concerns voiced at parish meetings, but those concerns have fallen on deaf ears.
"Turn on and scroll through the radio, that's all I hear. Noise. I don't hear anything worth paying attention to," Latiolais said.
The homeowners are filing a lawsuit in protest against the parish, its planning and zoning commission, and members who voted in favor of Jamestown Crossing in hopes of putting a stop to it.
"It was quite apparent to me the Planning Commissioner Matt Pryor and others absolutely ignored the law, and that's all we have as citizens to protect us," Christy said.
Residents say the lawsuit will be officially filed on Tuesday, June 5. A spokesman for Ascension Parish says the parish does not respond to potential or pending litigation.