Residents in Duluth’s Kenwood neighborhood met with city staff Thursday night to go more in-depth about their concerns, and how a potential rezoning could impact their neighborhood.
There were many concerned residents, but throughout the meeting, they were able to hear city officials, look at planning maps, and spend 20 minutes in small groups talking to their neighbors to discuss and write down their concerns about this rezoning proposal.
This rezoning proposal originated from a comprehensive plan from 2006 indicating a need for the area surrounding the intersection of Arrowhead Road and Kenwood Avenue to be more urban residential.
Officials said there are 12 areas around Duluth that they consider core investment areas. Right now they are working on the Woodland, Mall, and Morgan Park areas. So to stay on track with building up those 12 core investment areas, they need to start creating plans for the Kenwood neighborhood.
Some neighbors believe the rezoning project will help with property taxes and the cost of homes due to providing more amenities in the area, but most neighbors are concerned about increased traffic, no parking, being unable to keep the “neighborhood feel” to Kenwood, or even losing their homes to new development.
“The city talks about not enough nice, affordable, single-family dwellings and that’s what our whole neighborhood is,” said James Palumbo who lives in the Kenwood neighborhood.
City council officials wanted to stress that the final decision on this rezoning project goes through the city council and not the planning commission.
No decisions have been made yet, and officials said it could take many years before this potential project could go into effect.
Officials will now discuss the feedback they received from residents to see if they will move the project forward with the planning commission.