Wednesday, June 13, 2012
The recently formed North Hixson Neighborhood Association is moving its home base from the North River Civic Center to the new Hixson Rec Center. The group will continue to meet the second Thursday of each month from 6-8 p.m. but at its new location starting June 14.
Treasurer Sue Mickel said the group is moving locations to take advantage of the meeting room at the new center, available free of charge to neighborhood associations.
The North Hixson Neighborhood Association represents the area from Grubb Road to Boy Scout Road on Highway 153, bordered by Dayton Boulevard on the east and Sandswitch Road to the west, according to president Frank Eaton.
“I think in any area it’s a good idea for the community to be represented, to know about the city services and to know what’s important to other people in the area,” he said. “I think the way our city government works best is when our elected representatives have direct input from community organizations like neighborhood associations so they know what members of the community are interested in.”
The association formed around a recent rezoning request made by Duane Horton, who wanted to proceed with a 190-acre mixed-use development involving the leveling of a scenic hilltop near the intersection of Highway 153 and Boy Scout Road.
Mickel said 30-40 people attended the group’s first meeting, but attendance fell to around 15 last month.
“We now have two developments trying to reconfigure that same area between Grubb Road and Boy Scout Road,” she said, referring to Horton’s Chattanooga Village and the Fountains South development at 5875 Highway 153, on the west side of the highway south of Academy Sports and Kohl’s.
Eaton said the June 14 meeting will involve a discussion about the Regional Planning Agency’s recent meeting, of interest to many members due to a lift certain conditions proposal made by the Fountains South developer. Instead of building a retention system to handle a 50-year storm event as stipulated in the site’s rezoning, the developer has proposed building a detention pond that meets standard city stormwater regulations.
Eaton said he found out about the developer’s proposal shortly before the RPA meeting because a member of the association noticed a sign posted on the property. Planning opposition to proposed developments should be easier as an organized group associated with the city, he said.
“Once we are recognized as a neighborhood association, we will be made aware of what the City Council is voting on,” said Mickel.