Highland residents get a hearing, luxury apartments get axed

Barbra Heyen had a question April 17 for the Highland City Council: “I’m wondering, ‘Are our voices being heard?’”

Apparently, yes.

A developer wanted a zoning change to allow an apartment complex worth $5.8 million. There would be 56 apartments with two or three bedrooms each, a pool, a green house and a tea and coffee bar. Upscale town homes would rent for $900 a month.

The Autumn Crest subdivision next door did not want the zoning to change from single-family on that land. There were 109 signatures on a petition, seven of them spoke and others packed the council meeting.

Noise from kids in the pool and property values were the big concerns.

The proposal failed. The voices were heard.

Developer Brad Wilken said being turned down would stop his company from planning any future development in Highland. That’s probably OK, because there are plenty of communities that would love a $6 million project.

Highland Councilman Rick Frey said it was tough because Wilken did his homework.

Maybe, but it is possible that what was missing were some meaningful talks with his future neighbors.