YELLOW SPRINGS, Ohio (WDTN) — Neighbors in Yellow Springs are speaking out after the Village Council discussed their plans to rezone more than 50 acres of property for a new housing development.
Oberer Land Developers, a Miamisburg-based company, is planning to bring about 140 new homes on the land. The village manager, Jose Salmeron said he thinks it could be good for the community because they’ve been dealing with housing issues since the 1970s.
“The village has a high demand for housing, a lack of supply, and lack of physical space for housing to go on,” Salmeron said.
Earlier this week, the council heard comments on its plans to rezone 53 acres of land just south of the village. It would be used for single-family housing, townhomes,= and duplexes.
“The development doesn’t have an affordable housing element that is available to someone earning under 80 percent of the area median income. What it does offer, is 1.8 acres of land that’s going to be donated to the village for affordable housing projects,” said Salmeron.
The proposal is creating conflict for residents like Comedian Dave Chapelle.
During a virtual council meeting on Dec. 6, Chapelle said, “I have many business interests in town. I’ve invested millions of dollars in the town, and if you push this thing through, what I’m investing in is no longer applicable.”
Other residents said the proposal questions the village’s values.
“I think we need to protect our green space, and not develop it. I think we need to make decisions based on what the town needs, and not what the developers need. I don’t think the town needs $350,000 housing, but it may need affordable housing,” Yellow Springs resident Dimi Reber said.
“I don’t want it, but I think it’s going to come anyway because I think the village wants it for tax dollars and everything like that,” said DJ Banion.
Salmeron said he’s saddened to hear their opposition.
“This project isn’t anything against Dave, and I hope he doesn’t take it that we. We value everything he does,” he said.
A second hearing is scheduled for early 2022.