Friday, April 12, 2024
57.0°F

RIVER’S EDGE: Finally, right answer

| August 14, 2020 1:00 AM

The resolution of River’s Edge reached at Tuesday’s Planning Commission meeting was reasonable for the people of Coeur d’Alene.

We can thank the grass roots organization We The People of Coeur d’Alene — not our so-called City Attorney and Planning Department.

Consider the history.

The first version came to the Planning Commission in December 2018 — 850 apartments in massive buildings 75 and 85 feet high. Like Soviet housing or a prison. Opponents called it “Manhattan on the river.”

The city’s position? They were fine with it. The City Attorney joined as a co-applicant and argued FOR the project. Who exactly was representing the public?

Fortunately, lots of people — rallied by We The People — showed up and testified against it. The Planning Commission rejected the project.

The second version appeared at the developer’s March 2019 appeal to the City Council — 680 apartments in buildings 55 and 63 feet high.

The city’s position? They were fine with it. The City Attorney joined as a co-applicant and argued FOR the project. We The People rallied opposition.

According to The Press, about 100 people attended the council meeting and “virtually everybody who filled out sign-up sheets opposed the project.”

The City Council rejected the second version.

The developer sought “reconsideration” at a little publicized “executive session” of the council in May 2020. The City Attorney spoke with the council in private — representing who exactly? The council rejected “reconsideration.”

Only after that did the developer come to the table with a decent proposal — 384 apartments in buildings 45 feet high, ungated riverfront homes and public access lots.

A big improvement over the original version. No thanks to our feckless City Attorney and planners.

DAVID LYONS

Coeur d’Alene