Southhampton residents protest Ashby High Rise project

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by Lisa Chavarria / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on March 12, 2012 at 11:35 PM

Updated Tuesday, Mar 13 at 10:18 AM

HOUSTON—Hundreds of Southampton residents turned out to face Mayor Annise Parker, all with the same message Monday night.

“Stop Ashby High Rise!” residents chanted outside the meeting.

Reality recently sunk in as the city decided to settle with the developers to approve the project with a number of changes.

“We know the city can’t stop the project, it’s a bad project in a bad place,” said Jim Reeder, co-chair of the Stop Ashby High Rise task force

The city told residents it agrees with that.

“Do I believe there is any other thing we can do? No. If there is anybody in this room that has a silver bullet, I’d be glad to put it in my gun,” Mayor Annise Parker said.

The project would now be a 21-story high rise with more than 200 residential units and restaurant space. The city settled with the developers to reduce some of the traffic impact on the residents, but those neighbors feel it simply isn’t enough compromise.

“Can we make this project less undesirable, admittedly there are no good choices here, but I was wondering if we can find the lesser of the evils,” City Attorney David Feldman said to the crowd.

And unfortunately, for the residents in attendance, they are running out of options.

“Zoning would have stopped this, but we’ve tried that before and I don’t see that in our future,” Reeder said.

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