Opponents plan Four Farms meeting

Published 11:02 pm Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Concerned citizens have organized an open house on the proposed Four Farms subdivision project.

The event will be held Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m. at East Suffolk Recreation Center, 138 S. Sixth St. Members of the Suffolk Citizens for Responsible Growth group, which opposes the project, will be available to meet their neighbors and explain why they are against the development.

“We’re just trying to do what we can to try to get the word out,” said Lory Lagoyda, one of the members of the group. “What’s really alarming is that hardly anybody knows about it.”

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South Suffolk Properties LLC hopes to put about 2,000 single- and multi-family housing units and 164,000 square feet of commercial space on 462 acres south of downtown. The development would be situated between Hosier and White Marsh roads, with a northernmost boundary near Seminole Drive.

It would include space for office, grocery and retail establishments, a variety of parks, lakes and open spaces, and a 19-acre site for an elementary school. The development could attract more than 5,000 residents by the time of its projected completion in 2018. Single-family detached houses would cost between $175,000 and $350,000, depending on the market when they are completed.

Lagoyda is one of several concerned residents canvassing nearby neighborhoods to alert residents to the project.

“The people on White Marsh, by and large, have awareness of it,” she said. Others on nearby streets, however, “are probably the most affected by it than anyone, and they don’t know anything about it.”

A rezoning and comprehensive plan amendment connected to the proposal have been stalled in Planning Commission since September. That body has postponed a vote twice to give residents, the developers and the city time to get more information.

Further discussion, with a possible vote, is scheduled for the Dec. 21 Planning Commission meeting. If planners vote this month, the issue then goes to City Council in January for a vote.

At Thursday’s event, the public is invited to view enlarged maps of the proposal, talk with members of the opposition group and sign a petition opposing the project.

“We’re just trying to see what we can do to let people know about it,” Lagoyda said.

She added the group did not specifically invite the proponents of the project or their attorneys, but they are welcome to come, just like everybody else.

“It’s open for anyone to come,” she said.

For more information on the group, visit www.suffolkresponsiblegrowth.com. The group also has a Facebook page, which can be located by searching Suffolk Citizens for Responsible Growth on Facebook.