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Residents fight to save Schwartz Road neighborhood from development

Residents have to wait until March 22 for answers. While many said they're open to some kind of development, they don't believe this is it.

Posted: Mar 15, 2018 8:43 PM
Updated: Mar 16, 2018 10:35 AM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT)- A possible development on the city's northeast side has residents worried. In a meeting Thursday they spoke out to developers and commissioners about what the changes could do to their neighborhood.

Janese Latimer-Pierson said the proposed housing edition and duplexes don't fit into their quiet, rural neighborhood.

"We feel like it's just going to be high density homes and apartment complexes. There are no apartment complexes on Schwartz Road. It's not fitting for our country feel, and our setting, and our culture, and our environment," Latimer-Pierson said.

Ric Zehr, the developer, left the meeting before he could speak to FOX 55 News, but he said during his presentation the new housing would attract young families.

He also addressed a rumor that the duplexes would be Section 8 housing. He did say the development would add more traffic, though. It's something residents don't think Schwartz Road can handle.

"We had great support from the Amish. They're concerned. This development is going to put their family at risk with more traffic. They're on a horse and buggy," Latimer-Pierson said.

Residents were also told the development would give them lake-front views as buffers between homes, but with eight kids, Beth Miller said that scares her.

"It's literally steps from my front door," she said.

Now, residents have to wait until March 22 for answers. While many said they're open to some kind of development, they don't believe this is it.

"We want this city to grow in a little different way. That's why I love to call this place home. I'm actually proud to call Fort Wayne home," said Todd Stoller.

To get involved in saving Schwartz Road, or to learn more, click here.

The March 22 meeting will be at 1:00 p.m. at Citzens Square.

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