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Cherry Hill residents fight rental development

Residents in a Philadelphia suburb are banding together and organizing to fight against an apartment complex that has been proposed for the area. The battle began when a resident in the area discovered that the 152--unit rental development was being planned near Brace and Kressen roads, where a lumber store used to sit. The resident learned of the residential real estate development not through community leaders, but through a flyer that was placed on his windshield.

The man quickly put out a cry to fellow community members to halt the project. His efforts quickly paid off as many community members have joined him, trying to stop the project by sitting in on municipal meetings and spreading the word in edition to their online efforts, which consisted of fundraising and informative Web and Facebook pages.

The residents said they are concerned with how the mammoth rental project would affect an area that also suffers from high volumes of traffic. They were also concerned with how the additional residents might affect the school system.

The community members have raised money to help fund a lawsuit that they filed in a superior court back in mid-February. A lawyer representing the residents said that the zoning board should follow proper statutes, which residents argue that it didn't. The individuals behind the development did not make any comments to media about the case.

The township zoning board granted a variance that allowed for a residential development at the site back in September of last year. The residents said the process in which the decision was made was filled by abrupt cancellations of several proceedings.

Developing land is never easy, and requires careful planning along with proper authorization from zoning boards and other authorities in the area. As the story shows, when these processes are not followed mindfully, a legal battle can ensue.

Source: Philly.com, "Kevin Riordan: Cherry Hill residents oppose rental development," Kevin Riordan, April 5, 2013

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