Homemade signs are cropping up in the Delaware County Village that say, “NO high-density development in Galena.” People in the community are speaking out about a proposed project involving the Blackhawk Golf Course.
They have a long list of worries, including the lack of their own police and fire departments and the exploding numbers of students attending the Big Walnut School District.
Chris Durrence, treasurer for the newly formed Galena for Responsible Growth committee said he’s concerned the schools just aren’t ready for the influx of families. “When you take say another 1,000 or 2,000 plus children in such a short time, without the infrastructure there it spells nothing but disaster, “said Durrence.
Durrence says their village is quaint and has a great tax rate.
“The people are against this. The people aren’t against growth, people are against this high-density development. If we are wrong, convince us. Tell us where we are going to gain.”
Regie Mullins sits on his porch with Tasa the dog. Drivers go by his home, often honking and waving. Mullins said he doesn’t think developing the 260 acres is a good idea, and he supports all the signs his neighbors are putting up. “Traffic is really bad. It is going to get worse. It will probably be a steady stream.”
Village administrator Jeff White said “we don’t make arbitrary and capricious decisions. We are a following a process that we are required to follow in accordance with state law. Inevitably people will always disagree on the pace and direction of the growth. Whether it is here or another part of the county or another state. Decisions that are made will not ever satisfy everyone.”
The annexed land at Blackhawk would include the addition of 1,029 residences including apartments and condos. A boutique hotel, retail, clubhouse and office space are also part of the planned re-development of the golf course and farm.
Galena City Council is expected to vote on the annexation on September 23. Zoning hearings will be scheduled next.
“If we are wrong, convince us. Tell us where we are going to gain,” said Durrence.