Group Protests, Speaks Out Against Luxury Housing Development
(CBS DETROIT) - Protesters say finding affordable housing in Ann Arbor is hard to come by in their community.
"All of Washtenaw County, but Ann Arbor in particular is caught in the middle of a really terrible housing crisis," said Fight Concord Pines Organizer Tegwyn John.
"I mean there's not enough affordable housing for people to live in."
The group is now standing together to stop developers from tearing down a forest on Earhart Road near Geddes to build luxury homes.
"Even though they are going to be cutting down 70% of the landmark trees on the parcel that they have proposed developing we're good with community members who organized because we don't believe that Ann Arbor needs more luxury homes," John said.
The Toll Brothers' plan to build 57 homes on a 39-acre site is receiving pushback from the group Fight Concord Pines.
Protesters gathered Monday for a peaceful demonstration that ended with two arrests after land defenders locked themselves to construction equipment to halt development.
"We are seeing less and less of the urban forests that defines Ann Arbor as a tree town, Tree City, USA, and we are just concerned community members who don't believe that these landmark trees should be destroyed in order to build more luxury housing," John said.
The two protesters were hit with misdemeanor trespassing charges before being released.
"We're not demanding that nothing ever be built there, but we are saying that this development that's proposed is not right," John said.
Toll brothers sent the following statement to CW50 in regard to the protest that reads in part quote:
We understand that sustainability and preservation of the natural environment are integral to building exceptional homes and communities. We have worked closely with the City of Ann Arbor to carefully follow all of the city's ordinances in the design of the community.
"Toll Brothers has a long history of working cooperatively with the City of Ann Arbor to develop beautiful new home communities that serve to benefit the entire area.
We look forward to creating much-needed new homes for Ann Arbor families in a way that is environmentally responsible, including preserving and replanting hundreds of trees."
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