CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Opposition is mounting to Edgewood Summit's expansion plans after someone left fliers at homes in the Edgewood Drive area last week.
Supporters of the West Side retirement community are scheduled to ask the Municipal Planning Commission Wednesday afternoon to rezone several lots near the end of Cornell Street. They need to change the zoning from R-4 (single-family residential) to R-8 (high-density residential) to add a combined nursing home and Alzheimer's unit to the existing facility.
Leaders of 16-year-old Edgewood Summit publicly announced their $15 million expansion plans in late June, after first alerting employees and inviting neighbors to community meetings, board President Larry Crimmins said Tuesday.
"Some people liked what we had to say. Some didn't say anything one way or the other," Crimmins said. "But most who attended were in favor of what we're doing. What we've been doing all along is being proactive [in dealing with] runoff, traffic."
Mary Ellen O'Farrell, who lives downhill from the facility on Valley Road, said she never got an invitation. "If I did, I'm certain I'd have said I'm against it," she said.
"I don't think they're such good neighbors, even if they're white, wealthy and Protestant."
O'Farrell and her husband, Robin Godfrey, were among a group who filed a lawsuit in the early 1990s trying to block construction of Edgewood Summit. Kanawha Circuit Judge John Hey threw the case out of court, she said.
"Some of us were happy before Edgewood Summit was here," O'Farrell said. "We've had flooding on our street ever since. One of my children's cars was destroyed when runoff came down Valley Road and came over the hood of the car. It ripped bricks out of Valley Road.
"Edgewood Summit already owns 37 acres and do not pay property taxes," O'Farrell said. "I think the proper thing would be to not surrender more of our neighborhood for their plans."
O'Farrell said she got a flier last week with a form at the bottom to sign and send to the city Planning Department to register opposition to the rezoning.