June 13, 2012

Wilton commissioners, residents clash

By Brenda L. Schaefer, BHG News Service

Like many towns in North Dakota, Wilton has been suffering through its share of growing pains. During the June 6 meeting of the city commission, high on the agenda was a re-zoning request by Randy and Misty Schafer. The request for a zoning change from an R1 (single-family dwelling) lot to an R3 (multi-dwelling) lot to build a four-plex was denied during the Zoning hearing meeting. The Schafers explained that the four-plex would be built to serve the handicapped and elderly. Over a dozen concerned neighbors and friends were on hand to express their concerns about putting in an apartment complex in a neighborhood of single-family dwellings. The corner lot currently has a house and garage that are no longer habitable and will need to be torn down. Randy Schafer explained that they weren’t building a mega mall, just providing housing for the elderly and handicapped, with one unit going to his wife’s father who is handicapped. Misty Schafer said, “No matter what lot we choose, neighbors will not want an apartment built near them. They are happy to have it built, but not near their property.” She added, “We need the housing in Wilton. It was a big investment on our part. We are willing to put in the time and the effort.” Both Schafers noted that the lot is one lot away from a series of lots that are all zoned R3.

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