By Meg Hibbert
Salem City Council wants to meet with Planning Commission members and HopeTree representatives within the next month to learn more about HopeTree development plans.
That decision came out of the Monday night Council meeting work session before the regular Jan. 22 session. Both meetings were held at the Salem Civic Center.
Originally, Salem City Planning Commission was scheduled to hear details of HopeTree plans at the Jan. 10 meeting. At HopeTree’s request, the zoning matter was postponed until Feb. 14.
Salem’s Community Development office has sent a number of questions to HopeTree, Mayor Renee Turk said at the work session. After discussions about how much is not known for plans to sell half of the HopeTree acreage to developers who have a Planned Unit Development document showing up to 320 single-family homes, multi-family, apartments and commercial buildings, Councilmembers said they want to hold a joint meeting to learn more.
Although that meeting – possibly the first week of February – would be open to the public, citizens would not be able to speak or ask questions, the mayor pointed out.
Among the zoning items on Monday night’s agenda was one to build a duplex on a vacant lot in a primarily single-family neighborhood on Carey Avenue. After 10 neighbors spoke to oppose the house based on poor sight distance on the street, traffic dangers to elderly residents and young children and possible decreased home values, Council voted to deny the request.