Local residents packed council chambers as residents spoke one after another about their concerns with the plan.
Among the reasons for opposition were protests against potential high-density and multi-family developments, the lot size for a specific single-family residential designation and conflict with zoning designations in the future.
One dissenting resident said the plan does not reflect the desire of the majority of the community.
“Nobody wants to change your zoning right now,” Council Member Tag Green said for clarification. “That’s a different process.”
“It is a living document,” Green said at the Nov. 5 meeting. “It will change as the city changes. It should be updated every five years.”
Green said he would support the plan with a definition that excludes apartments. He made a motion to approve the plan. But it lacked the necessary second, so his proposal died without a vote.
Mayor Pat McGrail said he does not support the proposed plan, which has been two years in the making. It also cost the city about $200,000 to hire a consultant to work on it, he said.
“But here we are two years later, and it’s still controversial,” McGrail said. “And that’s really sad. It’s almost like we created more division in the city between the north and the south—I hate that. We’re all one city.”
In addition to objections over apartments and high-density developments, some people simply did not want any changes, McGrail said.
“Based on that, me personally, I’m not going to be able to support this FLUP,” he said. “I think we just leave things as they are.”
In the end, City Council ultimately denied the plan with a 5-to-2 vote. Green and fellow Council Member Chris Whatley voted against the majority. Whatley expressed interest in continuing work on an updated plan and making adjustments.
Moving forward, the city will defer to the current 21-year-old land use plan, City Manager Mark Hafner said.