Letter to the Editor | ‘Dark day’ College Township

‘Dark day’ in College Township

Sept. 4 was a dark day for the residents of College Township for two reasons:

First, the former Hilltop mobile home park land was rezoned Gateway Commercial, opening the door for development of high-density housing mixed with commercial property and all the associated issues of increased traffic, environmental impacts, etc. In this decision, several properties zoned R1 and R2 next to Hilltop also were rezoned to gateway commercial without the residents’ consent and with no regard for the effect of this rezoning on the families welfare and their home values. All College Township residents in homes that are zoned R1 and R2 near land that could be developed should be very concerned: The precedent has been set for your land to be rezoned without your approval.

Second, the College Township Council appears to have its own unique definition of democracy. Councilman Rich Francke commented on the Sept. 5 meeting that attendees all participated in “the purest form of democracy” (“Debate extends Hilltop meeting in College Township”). Yes, attendees exercised their First Amendment right to free speech, but our elected officials chose not to listen. The council never answered the question: How does rezoning as gateway commercial benefit the neighborhood?

For the record, one council member voted against the rezoning and is listening to the community’s concerns: Carla Stilson. The four other council members are fully on board with the gateway commercial bandwagon. Please remember this in the next round of College Township elections, and use your right to vote.

Liz Kisenwether

State College