Sisters housing project making some neighbors nervous

Hayden Homes official was on hand to gather input

New development makes residents speak up

SISTERS, Ore. - A new housing project proposed in Sisters has some nearby residents on edge about the impacts. Many spoke out at a public meeting Wednesday night. 

Hayden Homes is planning to develop about 200 mixed residential units along McKinney Butte Road, next to Sisters High School. 

The 30-acre plot would include single-family detached homes, townhomes and multi-family complex units. There would be about seven units per acre and 10 percent of it has to be affordable housing, under city code 

About 240 to 250 trees were surveyed and more than half will have to be removed, the developers said. 

Hayden Homes is also the developer of the Village at Cold Springs, next door to the property. Many of the people at the meeting were nervous about the construction, as well as current residents at Cold Springs and members of the homeowners association. 

"Our major concern is the traffic on our streets," said Cold Springs resident Doug Wills. "Our streets are not city streets 00\, they are only 25 feet wide. The other thing is that is being used as a shortcut for kids going up to the high school. They'll go racing down Freemont, and they don't pay any attention to anybody there. I could be walking out my driveway and some kid (or) somebody (could) roll right through."

Other concerns that were voiced included extra traffic on McKinney Butte Road combined with the high school and middle school commutes, building new homes in front of existing ones, which would affect views, cutting down too many trees, pedestrian safety on busy roads and finding the people to fill units. 

"The big thing is the traffic and density," said Sisters resident Nick Johnson. "They've bought the property (and ) they're going to build on it. Now we need to work together with them to take care of our concerns." 

Hayden Homes Regional Director Geoff Harris said the meeting was held to provide perspective on what could happen on the property and give residents and neighboring homeowners a chance to share their opinion. 

He also said the parcel was predetermined by the state and the city years ago as a location for mixed-residential units. 

"We appreciated speaking with our neighbors and taking the opportunity to hear their questions and thoughts before we make a formal proposal," Harris said. "We will sit down with city staff and have some conversations before we make our formal application."

Harris said his staff took detailed notes on every concern and will take them into consideration when drafting the application that will be presented to the city. 

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