NIMBY Epidemic Infects St. Louis

Senior citizen apartment complexes, a gas station, and 17 emergency communication towers are among the latest targets of staunch neighborhood opposition in the St. Louis area. What is the line between reasonable objections and "BANANAS" opposition?

"They aren’t landfills. Or nuclear power plants. Or halfway houses for sex offenders."

"But people are fighting — and fighting hard — to stop two new apartment complexes for senior citizens," reports Todd C. Frankel. "One of them has been proposed in Town and Country. The other is already under construction in Oakville. Some residents are unhappy. They say they are concerned about increased traffic, lowered property values and the outsize scale of the new structures. 'Why here?' they ask."

"This neighborly opposition has brought some grief from others around the St. Louis region. After all, seniors sound like harmless neighbors. But new developments, whatever they are, tend to bring out fierce objections and worries," he adds.

“The basic issue is that people don’t like change,” said Amber Miller, planning director in Fairview Heights and an officer of the American Planning Association’s St. Louis chapter. “It doesn’t matter what the change is. That’s not what they bought into.”

Full Story: Disputes over senior housing reflect "not in my backyard" worries

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