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The Proctor Clears Another Hurdle
For those of you tracking the progress of plans for a new mixed-use development in the heart of the Proctor neighborhood, here's a quick update: the hearing examiner has recommended that the developer's request to vacate the air over the alley be approved.
Plans for The Proctor would connect the two parts of the project over the alley that runs parallel to North 27th and 28th, while still leaving alley access for vehicles, garbage, and fire to pass through. That idea requires approval from the City.
Residents opposed to the project for its size in general have also come out against allowing the sky bridge. Many of the concerns voiced - over the height and density of the planned development and the impact of a large number of smaller rental units on the neighborhood - were not directly related to the decision over the vacation of air rights. That decision was based on whether or not connecting the two sides would provide a public benefit.
Based on that question, the hearing examiner found a list of benefits, according to The News Tribune: an upgrade of the alley surface, burying of existing above-ground utilities, returning property to the tax rolls, and planned design enhancements.
It was recommended that the variance be allowed. That's not the final step, however, as the vacation still requires Council approval.
We're guessing you can expect some heated public comment when the issue comes before Council, probably sometime next month.
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