A petition seeking to overturn the annexation of roughly 21 acres known as the “Chugg Property” in North Providence was turned in to the Cache County Elections office Wednesday.
Envision Providence, a community-organized political issues committee, gathered more than 2,000 signatures and formerly filed the petition in an effort to put a referendum on November’s ballot. One third of the signatures will need to be verified by the county as registered voters.
“This referendum is a signal to city leaders that they need to listen to their constituents,” according to Envision Providence Chair Joshua Paulsen.
The so called Chugg Property was recently annexed into Providence City and assigned Life Cycle Residential (LCR) zoning.
LCR, which was established in Providence, allows developers to build medium and high-density housing, mixed with single family homes and integrated green-space.
While the referendum seeks to overturn the annexation of the Chugg Property, Paulsen said “Many citizens view it as a vote on the LCR ordnance.”
The ordinance has generated much debate and controversy since it was passed in April 2018.
According to Paulsen, LCR zoning allows land developers great discretion on the amount and type of green space required and the density of housing they build (4-12 units per acre, including townhomes/condos).
“There are no legal controls in this ordinance that would prevent the developer from building something much different than we wanted,” Paulsen said.
“I’m not anti-development,” he emphasized, “we are against giving the developer that level of control. We would like assurances to what will be built in our community.”
Paulsen said he would like to see residents and land developers working together on plans that are in the best interest of the city and the community.
The Providence City Council recently rejected the LCR rezoning application from Imagine Development/Providence Highlands LC, a proposed 79 acre subdivision.
During a public hearing, residents expressed concern the proposed rezone in the city’s Highlands neighborhood would allow too many units and not enough green space.