MIDLAND --The Blue Ridge apartment controversy continues. After the Midland City Council voted 4-3 to approve a new plan that they hope will solve the privacy concerns for people living along caldera.
Residents I spoke with say this is lipstick on a pig. It doesn't fix what they consider to be the real problem. Apartment buildings build differently than the originally approved plans. And some city councils agree.
City Council members scratched opaque windows. And peeked through shutters trying to look out the other side.
All mock-up materials developer Ken Lokey brought to Tuesdays meeting, hoping that his new designs would block the view from apartments into residents backyards.
"Trying to work out a solution, but really the situation should really never have occurred," said resident Joel Rogers.
Joel Rogers isn't the only resident who feels this way.
Dissaproval could be seen all around the room. Even city council members were arguing with one another.
"I don't believe the remedy solved the problem completely," said John James, of District 3.
One of those remedies: a proposal to build carports. The slides show that it would block the view into backyards by 95%.
"95% wasnt 100%, im disspaointed in the outcome," said James.
"I'm glad the outcome is what it is, because I believe it solves the issue of privacy," said Mayor Wes Perry.
Mayor Wes Perry says he's hopeful, but when Lokey is finished building, he will go see if it fixes the problems himself.
"Say tomorrow they start building these projects, ill go up to the third floor and see personally," said Perry.
But with the vote past, Rogers feels money is being given to a man who isn't part of this community, and he wants justice.
"This is not just about money, its about our way of life, and our way of life is much more important than money or someone developers money," said Rogers.
The City Council gave lokey 6 months to complete this project. Lokey will be adding car ports, wood shutters, window film, and evergreen trees. But even Lokey admitted this only solves 95% of the line of sight issue. Lokey says the enhancements will cost him another $125,000.
Now, the final cost may end up being much more. People living along Caldera have been considering a class-action lawsuit against Lokey and the city, saying this complex has made their homes worthless. It remains to be seen where the suit will go, now that this decision has been made.
Jackie Smith can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.