KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Those in the Dry Hollow community are hoping to prevent rezone development. It has been what South Knoxville resident, Brad Russell, calls a year-long fight.
“The more we started looking into it, we found out what they were wanting to do was put 4.5 houses per acre in this area,” he said.
Russell lives on a farm adjacent to the property set for rezoning. He says there’s a total of around 600 acres in that area where hundreds of residents would be affected. In fact, after starting a petition, Russell had nearly 800 people sign, all for different reasons. There are concerns on the topics of traffic, schools, and the environment.
“There’s actually been multiple TDEC violations because of what the developers have already done and they haven’t even started building a house yet. So we’re all concerned about those things, and if they’re allowed to come in and building houses, we don’t feel they are going to be the best at doing that,” Russell said.
WATE asked developers — Thunder Mountain Properties LLC — for a comment and the company declined to speak at this time. Russell said he along with other residents have also not heard from developers, which is why they are all hoping for help from commissioners during Monday night’s meeting.
“We just hope that our commissioners tonight will listen to the people and not these developers who live 75 miles away from Knox County. I mean, listen to the people who live here. We want to stay here and that’s why we’re fighting this because we love where we live and we can’t sustain this type of growth.”
Before adjourning Monday night, commissioners voted 8-3, in favor of a motion by commissioner John Schoonmaker, which green-lighted the platting of up to 180 homes on 64 acres, also known as the lower area. Once that phase is completed, then developers could proceed with additional development. Also, the motion prevented developers from clustering houses together.