UPDATE: Machesney Park Committee Denies Zoning Change

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MACHESNEY PARK (WIFR) -- Neighbors in a Machesney Park subdivision say they're celebrating the village's decision to prevent a developer from putting up duplexes behind their homes.

The Machesney Park Zoning Board denied the zoning change for a field behind Hawks Ridge Road off Forest Hills.

It would have changed from single family housing to allow for multi family homes.

Several homeowners say an apartment complex would overwhelm their neighborhood.

The developer says duplexes would sell better then single homes at this spot.

The full village board still has the final say. They vote on Augst 4.

MACHESNEY PARK (WIFR) – Neighbors in a Machesney Park subdivision fear their property values will take a dive if a proposed housing development moves in.

The scenery behind Jim Kohler’s house is peaceful, with wildflowers and birds dotting the landscape.

“It’s named Hawk's Ridge for a reason, we see hawks and wildlife," Kohler said.

Yet Kohler worries the landscape may soon give way to a less appealing sight.

“I can’t imagine coming out here and looking into a window of a third story apartment building and have a guy staring back at me! It’s too close. The idea isn’t sound,” Kohler adds.

The company Hawk's View LLC has owned this land for more than a decade but right now it’s zoned for single family homes. A representative with Hawk's View LLC says they think they’d have better luck renting apartments here than selling single family homes. That’s why they’re asking the village to rezone the land. Kohler and some of his neighbors don’t think their subdivision could handle the extra traffic and noise.

“The traffic that‘s in here now is more or less pushing the limit. This is not an improvement whatsoever,” said neighbor James Schlacks.

“Next to our kids, this is the biggest investment we’re going to make. We don’t want an idea like this that would be better suited somewhere else to hurt something that’s become a wonderful place to live,” says Kohler.

Kohler says he has a petitions signed by 60 neighbors against the zoning change. He adds that building single-family homes here wouldn’t bother him, but anything else would make the area too cramped.

The village’s zoning department recommends that the village board deny this zoning change. Neighbors will get to weigh in during a meeting on Monday at Machesney Park Village Hall at 6pm.

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