Cotswold neighborhood fighting against developers who want to bring in condos

- It was a heated public hearing at Charlotte City Council Monday night. Many who live in and around Cotswold are fighting back against developers who want to build condos in their neighborhood.

Monday night’s meeting was the last public hearing – one side saying they are doing all they can to preserve the neighborhoods aesthetic and the other side using words like bullies and greed to describe the changes that could come.

The Charlotte City Council heard from both sides on the proposed rezoning of Sharon Lane.

Signs can be seen up and down Sharon Lane calling for support on a change.org petition that has already gotten more than 1,000 signatures. Bridget Ann Hamden said she is against the rezoning. She’s already spent $5,000 correcting storm water flooding she said was caused by prior development and said the loss of trees and access – traffic would be devastating.

“If you are on Sharon Lane anytime between 5:30 and 7 you literally have to beg to come out of our street. So you can imagine what would happen if we increase the density?” she said.

Jeff Brown, the developer’s attorney, said they’re surprised by the community’s reaction.

“We are a little surprised at some of the reaction because in fact, less traffic, a better design and other ingredients that we think are positive,” Brown explained.

The developer’s attorney said they would build 24 condos that would cost more than $1 million each and would be geared toward empty nesters.

“Two of the existing homeowners want to move into the property as new homeowners of the units and this is being done in a very tastefully and sensitive way. So, this is a project that will be an enhancement to the community,” Brown said.

But residents who oppose the project said it’s all about the money and their hope is council siding with them would send a clear message.

“I think it’s a huge investment and I think it’s time that City Council uses their position to tell the people of Charlotte that the developers are not in charge and that they have a voice and they have a right to defend their neighborhood and their neighborhoods’ matter as they’ve been established.”

City Council could take a vote on the rezoning as early as the next planned meeting. 

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