COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho — The Coeur d'Alene Planning Commission unanimously approved the proposed 442-acre annexation and zoning change for the Coeur Terre housing project on Tuesday night. The proposal now goes to the Coeur d'Alene City Council for consideration.
Kootenai County Land Company is looking to build more homes and commercialize this field of land just north of I-90 and south of West Hanley.
In the master plan, at least 1,000 acres would be converted into business spaces, parks, two schools and 4,500 living units. But, before developers and the city move any further, they want to hear from the community.
Tuesday, the city hosted a public hearing at the library to share project updates and get community feedback.
"We really pride ourselves not only in keeping business local, but also reinvesting back into our community," Melissa Wells, president of Kootenai County Land Company, said.
According to Kootenai County Land, the project is designed with walkability, convenience of location and access to recreational opportunities in mind.
"As we develop our communities, we're very focused on collecting input proactively from the community and then taking that feedback and incorporating it into our designs," Wells said.
Signed up to speak at Tuesday's hearing was Jeff Voeller, director of operations for the Coeur d’Alene School District. He said he was there to speak on behalf of the district and thank the developers for including new school sites in the design plan.
"The west side of our school district is really full right now," Voeller said. "So having access to an elementary and middle school are critical for the school district and future moving forward."
Not all meeting attendees were as eager about the development as Voeller. Homeowner and Coeur d'Alene resident of seven years Klaus Glassmann said he has some concerns about the project.
His backyard lines up with the edge of the proposed property site. He said he thinks commercializing the space will have a negative impact on the neighborhood.
"We have beautiful mountains, wildlife, moose coming right up to our fence," Glassmann explained. "It's all very enjoyable. And all of that will disappear. And Ican imagine that eventually much of what we enjoy today will disappear."
KREM 2 spoke with additional neighbors who live near the development site. One neighbor said he thinks it's a terrible idea and Coeur d'Alene doesn't have jobs for 4,000 more property owners.
Another neighbor was more understanding of the proposed change, especially as more people continue to move to North Idaho.
The next city council meeting is set for Oct. 18.
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