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By MARTY FINLEY
ELIZABETHTOWN– After months of City Council meeting appearances and negotiations with the city, the residents of Indian Hills subdivision are getting the screening along Navaho Drive that they asked for.
The city approved a municipal order Monday, agreeing to construct a 10-foot tall temporary wooden fence that will stretch 450 feet down Navaho Drive between the subdivision and the Hardin Plaza shopping center along North Mulberry Street.
The council took action to restore natural screening the city and developers agreed to maintain in a 1974 agreement. However, the current developer of the property, Bob Short, removed a number of trees in the fall of 2007 between the subdivision and the shopping center property because he believed that leaves from the trees were clogging drains, resulting in overflows of water onto his property.
Doug Rickett, spokesman for the group of residents, told the council in June that the removal of the trees had caused a number of problems.
“It casts an industrial shadow upon the beautiful family atmosphere that Indian Hills has long had a reputation of,” Rickett said in the meeting.
The fence will serve as a temporary screen from noise and other activities originating from the shopping center that residents told the council were resulting in disruptions and casting blight over the neighborhood. Some homeowners who were in the process of selling homes also expressed concern that the situation was hindering that process.
The council said the fence will be removed once trees are planted and reach the height of the fence, restoring the natural screen back to the area. The homeowners and city agreed to work together to maintain the trees and the fence once they are set in place The order also states that the council “shall determine the types, sizes, spacing and quantities of the shrubs and/or trees to be planted along the length of Navaho Drive and shall replace, in the future, any shrub and/or tree as needed, in the judgment of the city.”
The order includes another portion of the subdivision where trees have died or are dying. Councilmembers said they would fill in spaces and replace trees as necessary.
A four-foot high chain link fence runs the length of Navaho Drive and was to be maintained by the developer under the 1974 agreement, which residents said was not being upheld. In response, the council included in the order language stating that the city would enforce any maintenance in accordance with provisions in the Property Maintenance Code and the city’s zoning ordinance.
Marty Finley can be
reached at (270) 505-1762