BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Residents in a neighborhood near Staring Lane are unhappy with the proposed rezoning for a housing development adjacent to their homes.
“What they’re proposing, to put trailer size houses on small lots with the 18-foot garage doors as the main front feature, is just not compatible to our neighborhood,” resident, Thomas Daigle, said.
Neighbors don’t like the zoning, but the developer behind the project, Nick FaKouri of Tower Capital, says there’s plenty of land for the homes. Residents say they’ve always had flooding issues, and the proposed retention pond is just adding insult to injury. Other people are worried the retention pond can’t hold enough water and is going to dump into their drainage ditch, which already has flooding issues.
“The retention pond will be right on the other side of my property line,” Julia Ledet, another resident, said. “From what we learned at the meeting at the library, the retention pond is not going to be aerated. I do like to sit in my back yard at night. [There will be] mosquitoes. I won’t be able to enjoy my own backyard.”
Fellow neighbors can relate to Ledet.
“I get flooding now when it rains. I’ve done a ton of work to keep my house protected," David Johnson said. ”The idea of any more water being added to the public drainage system is crazy."
FaKouri doesn’t think the residents’ assessment of the retention pond and housing density is completely accurate.
“Nobody has addressed the issue until I came along and now it’s my fault,” Fakouri said sarcastically. “And that’s okay. I would help them fix their problem, but having 35 houses on six acres is not dense.”
Fakouri told WAFB he was willing to work with the residents in the neighborhood on addressing their frustrations with the pond, but also added it must be approved by the city as well.
Now, the Planning Commission will get to decide if it’s too dense. The approval of the rezoning has been pushed back to July’s agenda.