Neighbors concerned over proposed Madison development


Neely's Bend neighbors anxious to tell the Metro Government their thoughts on an controversial development project will have to wait until next month.

Developer Ragan Smith is planning to transform the 33-acre property that used to be the Odom's Tennessee Pride Sausage Factory into retail and housing.

The Metro Planning Commission scheduled a public hearing for Thursday afternoon where neighbors could voice their concerns. At the meeting, the commission decided to hold off on discussion until August 10.

The project could bring 218 more housing units to the area, and neighbors are split.

"I just think its a raw deal for everybody concerned," said Don Schwab, whose back yard backs into the property.

"I actually think it's pretty cool," said Zack Cobb, who lives across the street.

The move would involve changes to the land-use policy and zoning regulations.

Schwab said adding more than 200 families to the area would create a traffic nightmare in a neighborhood where roads back up every day.

"It's just going to be a regular circus out here," Schwab said.

Others like Cobb, welcome the change.

"I think Madison, especially the Neelys Bend area would be a great place to expand what Nashville is already doing," Cobb said.

He encourages his neighbors to look toward the future instead of the past.

"Anytime change is involved they're kind of weary about it, but that's why Nashville's hip and it's what's happening," Cobb said.

Developer Jarrett Bell said he plans to use that time to better address the concerns of neighbors.

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