5th on 5th is a 'robber baron' project

Thanks to the Post-Bulletin for the coverage of the proposed Fifth on Fifth development. By all accounts, support for the neighborhood was overwhelming at the zoning meeting. I am writing to urge all those who stood up for the preservation of the neighborhood to maintain their efforts and attend the July 16 city council meeting where the final decision on the zoning and project will be made.

If the zoning changes, the single-family homes on the street will gradually be converted to higher-density rentals to create a perceived needed transition from high- to low-density housing. This should not be allowed. In addition to the destruction of an historic building and a beautiful neighborhood, the proposed development has a robber baron aspect to it as well. It would appropriate the investment of the surrounding residents — charging high rents to live in a nice neighborhood while the zoning change begins the neighborhood's decline. Permitting this plan to proceed would initiate a transfer of the neighboring homes' equity from those who built it to the one destroying it.

Close-knit neighborhoods strengthen a city by providing stable environments to raise families, reducing crime, and beautifying the surroundings. The city's Land Use and Master Plans recognize this with numerous requirements for sensitivity and preservation of existing neighborhoods. Please help preserve this one by rejecting the zoning change.

Eric Oettinger


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