South St. Louis County residents raise concerns over senior hous -

South St. Louis County residents raise concerns over senior housing complex

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By John Bailey By John Bailey

( -- A battle is brewing in south St. Louis County over a proposed housing complex for low-income senior citizens.

Some residents say they don’t want HUD (Housing and Urban Development) housing in the neighborhood, while others say the project is being crammed onto too small a piece of property.

Still others question just who will live there.

News 4 found many residents were stunned to find out the project was in the works, and feel like they were deceived.

Bulldozers have already started on the property in the 6000 block of Telegraph in Oakville.

Forty apartments are planned for the site, and the project manager with National Church Residences out of Ohio says residents should be moving in this time in 2014.

All of it seems to be happening fast, for Oakville residents. Cindy Pyatt runs a pre-school next-door to the development. Like many others, she says she doesn’t think she was ever notified about the project and now has serious concerns.

“It just seems too big for the tract of land, for this piece of property,” she said.

State Representative Marsha Haefner says so many people started asking her to look into the project, she started making phone calls.

“The more I look into it the more apparent it becomes there was no transparency as to the scope of the project,” she said.

But County Councilman Steve Stenger says there were four meetings where the project was discussed and says there was little to no attendance and no opposition.

“That was one of the first things that I checked on,” he said. “The project was approved over a year ago so I went back as soon as questions were raised and checked to see if the process was followed and that process was followed.”

Many are also questioning issues ranging from the quality of construction, who will be admitted and how well will the property be maintained.

National Church Residences  says many people hear the development will be a HUD project and panic.

A spokesperson says the development is a $5 million project that will be state of the art when it comes to energy efficiency.

The organization says it may have a townhall meeting to talk to those living nearby, though did not release a date and time

Residents are planning a meeting of their own, scheduled for Wednesday night at 7 p.m. at Saint Paul’s United Church of Christ. 

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