Proposal to change zones angers Madison residents - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Zoning change proposal angers some in Madison

An area currently zoned for residential use could be changed for commercial use. (Source: WAFF) An area currently zoned for residential use could be changed for commercial use. (Source: WAFF)
A staff report says the proposed area is not entirely consistent with city growth plan recommendations. (Source: Planning Commission report) A staff report says the proposed area is not entirely consistent with city growth plan recommendations. (Source: Planning Commission report)
MADISON, AL (WAFF) -

Plans to create a new business zoning area in Madison are bringing out angry opposition from neighbors.

"I truly do not want to live across from a shopping center," said Sue Thorn, bluntly summing up neighbors' concerns about the idea of rezoning a 19 acre lot at the northeast corner of Wall Triana Highway and Browns Ferry Road in Madison.

On Thursday, the Madison Planning Commission will take public input on a request from the property's owners to change the zoning designation of the site from R2, residential, to B2, business.

The property is now considered undeveloped, except for its use as a farm field currently planted with wheat.

Neighbors such as Thorn and Eva Wallding, who lives directly across Wall Triana, complained that a zoning change would hurt them. "We are concerned about enjoying our property and possible lowering of property values and possible a little bit of crime, more wrecks on the road," she said.

A staff report prepared for the Planning Commission acknowledged "the proposed rezoning is not entirely consistent with the Madison growth plan recommendations" which designate the surrounding area for "in town neighborhood development." 

But, the report went on to say, the intersection of Wall Triana and Browns Ferry was "ideally suited for commercial development providing convenient access to both surrounding neighborhoods and significant commuter traffic."

Mike Potter, member of both the Planning Commission and the Madison City Council said he had not made any decision whether he would support or oppose the zoning change.

The lot is currently zoned for the construction of housing, a consideration Thorn said was crucial for her decision to move to Madison in the first place.

"When we researched, we chose Madison over Huntsville," she said.  "And when we bought our house in Park Meadow (subdivision nearby), we made sure that this was residential zoned, which it is, so that I wouldn't have a business across from me."   

Copyright 2014 WAFF. All rights reserved.

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