Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Attendance dropped to less than 20 people at the North Hixson Neighborhood Association’s first meeting in its new home at the Hixson Rec Center, leading members to look at new ways of promoting the group.
“I’m disappointed in the turnout,” said Sue Mickel, noting that previous meetings have had double or triple the attendance of the most recent meeting held June 14.
She said the decrease in participation might be due to putting too few signs out about the meeting. The city only has six for the group to use, and Mickel asked for suggestions as to where more prominent places to put the signs might be.
Among the topics discussed was a proposed development at the 6300-6400 block of Grubb Road and the 5800-6000 blocks of Highway 153 referred to as Fountains South, located next to the Fountains North center housing Kohl’s and Academy Sports.
At its June 12 meeting, the Planning Commission for Chattanooga and Hamilton County denied project developer Preston Denson’s request to lift a condition placed on the previous rezoning of the property. Denson had asked that the requirement of an on-site detention pond capable of handling a 50-year flood be lifted in lieu of a stormwater system in compliance with the current standards listed in the Chattanooga Stormwater Manual.
His request was denied due to concerns expressed by the Chattanooga Land Development Office. Staff’s primary issue involved the stormwater detention facilities, which must be constructed across a property line, as the Fountains North and Fountains South developments have different owners. A cross-access easement must first be agreed upon between the owners for the commissioners’ approval.
North Hixson Neighborhood Association member Jerry Jones said he was bothered that his group did not receive notice from the city that the issue was coming before the Planning Commission.
“If as an association we are going to take action on various issues, we need to have some method of finding out what these issues are about,” said association member Carol Million, who said she was confused about what the actual issue was.
Mickel said she has been working with city employee Karen Clay, and the group will soon be officially established and should begin receiving related notices.
The group discussed whether it was necessary to attend each Planning Commission meeting together. Jones volunteered to go and report back to the group on any issues of interest to the neighborhood.
The association will continue to meet the second Thursday of each month from 6-8 p.m., with the next meeting set for July 12.
Mickel said she is looking for ideas from the group for future activities, such as covered dinners, neighborhood clean-up days and potential speakers for meetings.