Indian Trail neighbors are protesting a proposal by developer Leif Sorenson to rezone 13 lots in his Meadow Glen subdivision to allow duplexes instead of single family homes.
Greg Smith, City of Spokane hearing examiner, will consider the proposal on Feb. 25 at 9 a.m. at City Hall, second floor.
“We all bought properties based on this being a single family neighborhood,” said Henry Crisler, who lives across the street from the proposed duplexes.
The duplexes are planned along Brookfield Avenue and Millbury Street.
Residents are worried that duplexes will reduce the resale value of their homes, increase traffic and crime.
Sorenson said the lots, which back onto the power line easement, should have been zoned for duplexes initially.
Sorenson said selling upper-end homes next to power lines would be difficult, forcing him to build significantly less expensive houses. Instead, he said he’s planning deluxe duplexes in the $170,000 range.
“Our goal is to keep the area upgraded as much as we can under the circumstances,” he said. “This is a more plausible buffer for the powerlines.”
“I’m very puzzled why the neighbors have a problem with this,” said Sorenson. “We could put in very low-cost, single-family homes.”
Neighbors met with Sorenson and asked that if he builds duplexes, that they rent for $800 to $1,000 per month. Crisler said homes in the neighborhood sell for about $150,000.
If the hearing examiner approves the rezoning application, Crisler said some neighbors may place signs in their front yards stating “duplexes and renters are unwelcome.”
“We hope that it doesn’t get to that point,” said Crisler.
Sorenson also expects to begin laying out the first 16 lots of his McCarroll East subdivision this spring.
Eventually Sorenson plans to build 257 single family homes and 30 duplexes on 110 acres east of Farmdale and Indian Trail roads, between Strong and Shawnee. Barnes Road will provide access to the first phase.
“We are not going to go very fast,” said Sorenson.
Grading, streets, sewer and water will take most of the summer. Sorenson said some home construction might start before fall.
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