Residents Angry Over New Orleans RV Park
Nearly 100 Ama, La., residents yelled at Parish Councilman Brian Fabre for more than an hour Wednesday (June 27) because of his backing of a recreational vehicle park in this New Orleans suburb, which was approved more than 18 months ago and is now under construction, according to the Times Picayune.
Residents, who attended a town meeting that Fabre called to deal with concerns about the matter, said they didn't know the RV park was in the works until it was under construction in March.
They demanded to know why Fabre backed the project in December 2005, against the recommendations of the planning and zoning department and the parish planning commission. They also complained that the signs posted in the neighborhood were invisible to most residents.
Park owner Ritchie Stanley, who is building his own house at the rear of the property, said the RV park is designed to cater to people who travel the country working on industrial plant maintenance and turnarounds.
"Some of these people travel the country six to eight months a year and bring their families with them," he said. "They work 12 to 14 hours a day, go to sleep, then go back to work. They're not going to be causing any trouble," he said.
Residents also complained that there were no streetlights, fencing or shrubbery around the 66-lot park as required by law.
Fabre, who said the uproar took him by surprise, told the audience he would ask the parish to send an inspector around to the property to ensure that Stanley is meeting all parish requirements.
The planning and zoning department recommended against the change from the open land zoning classification to the RM-1 classification, which allows RV parks and mobile homes, saying it would be a significant departure from surrounding land uses, that the 18-foot-wide street is too narrow for that use and that rezoning to RM-1 would "adversely affect the reliance that neighboring property owners or occupants have placed on existing zoning patterns."