A developer wants to build 150 to 190 apartments on Balch Road in Madison County just south of Capshaw Road. The builder is looking to finish the apartments in the next 2 years or so after they try to annex the 22 acres of land into Huntsville City limits.
Gary Knight lives right across the street from the proposed project. He told WAAY 31 this project comes as a surprise to him. Knight has lived on Balch Road most of his life. He's seen it go from a dirt road to a busy street. When he found out about the proposed apartment complex, "My first reaction is 'oh my god, we're going to have another three hundred to five hundred more people here on this road trying to get in and out," said Knight.
His main concern is traffic, "in the afternoons it gets backed up maybe a mile back here from the stop sign," said Knight.
The developer told WAAY 31 they are trying to be as community friendly as possible by keeping the buildings single level and at a high price point of $1,300 a month. As for traffic concerns, "That's going to be for the city to determine. That's really not my call. I'm not sure about any of that," said Joseph White.
City Councilman Will Culver hosted a town hall meeting Monday night to inform people in the area about the project. He told WAAY 31 road improvement projects for Balch Road are in the city's capital improvement plan for some time in the next decade, but it could be moved up if needed.
Knight understands a new development like this was inevitable with how fast the area is growing, "we don't like seeing a lot of change happening in the world, but things do happen and things do change. I would like to see it handled properly," said Knight.
WAAY 31 is still working to find out when the last traffic flow study was done on Balch Road. We're also working find out what exactly the City of Huntsville has planned for improvement projects on the road.
This project is far from a done deal. Councilman Culver told WAAY 31 the developer still has to submit an application to be annexed into Huntsville city limits. The project also has to make it through several different committees and the city council, which could take three to six months.
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