Lufkin Planning & Zoning votes down medical facility zone change

Lufkin Planning & Zoning votes down medical facility zone change
Photo: KTRE
Photo: KTRE

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - In a unanimous vote, the City of Lufkin's Planning and Zoning Committee voted against a re-zoning proposal for the 2100 block of Old Union Road.

A Dallas based company filed to change the area from residential to commercial at the end of September. They had plans for a 19-acre healthcare facility. At a public hearing Monday, the committee heard from residents of that neighborhood.

One by one, more than a dozen residents expressed concern for the possibility of a medical center being built in their Four Seasons neighborhood.

"I moved into that neighborhood for the safety and security of my children. And this is only going to cause more problems for safety and security. My children can freely ride their bikes in the neighborhood and that's something I don't have to worry about their safety or who's in that neighborhood," said Meredith Stamford, a resident.

Residents said one of the biggest concerns in neighborhood they have is that it will change the quality of life. They said if the zone-changed would have been approved, then it could increase more noise pollution, light pollution along with increased traffic in their neighborhood.

"I don't know if you've (committee) done nursing home studies and to see do we indeed need another nursing home? Are y'all sure that we need another nursing home?" said Myrtle Welch, a resident.

Another resident raised concerns of the numerous unused buildings which the company could occupy.

"Furthermore there are an abundance of buildings and property already zoned commercial which could be utilized rather than rezoning a designated residential area as commercial. As a homeowner and tax payer I'm opposed to the property being zoned commercial," said Brenda Stogner, a resident.

 The Dallas based company, Cumulus Design, aimed doctors' offices and a nursing home. A liaison representing the company addressed residents' concerns at the hearing.

"I just want to address those things to put some of these things not as bad as they may think it is, although I understand it really doesn't make any difference they just don't want it beside them and I understand that," said Michael Parker, a surveyor.  

Ultimately, opposition to the zone change is what the Planning and Zoning Committee of Lufkin voted. A five-member panel decided against the change.

If the Dallas based company wanted to continue to invest in developing, they will have to find another location or submit another zone change request.

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