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posted: 7/31/2017 5:30 AM

Batavia to air hearing on controversial Campana project

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  • A developer has received an allocation of low-income housing tax credits from the state for a plan to convert the Campana building in Batavia into housing.

      A developer has received an allocation of low-income housing tax credits from the state for a plan to convert the Campana building in Batavia into housing.
    Rick West | Staff Photographer

  • The crowd of people interested in hearing about a proposal to turn the Campana building in to mostly low-income apartments at a Batavia committee-of-the-whole meeting in May. The crowed spilled into a hallway.

      The crowd of people interested in hearing about a proposal to turn the Campana building in to mostly low-income apartments at a Batavia committee-of-the-whole meeting in May. The crowed spilled into a hallway.
    Susan Sarkauskas | Staff Photographer

 
 

Batavia leaders are making plans to handle a large crowd expected to attend a hearing Wednesday on a proposal for 80 apartments, including 64 subsidized units, to be built in the former Campana factory building at Route 31 and Fabyan Parkway.

An opposition group called No to Campana has been urging people to attend all meetings on the proposal, for "power in numbers," according to its website.

BATV public-access television will air the meeting live on Comcast Channel 10 in Batavia and on its YouTube channel, BATV1017.

The hearing is at 7 p.m. in the council chambers of the Batavia Government Center, 100 N. Island Ave.

There will be a television set in a conference room next to the chamber also.

The video will also be available later in the week on-demand on the BATV website, myBATV.com.

Materials about the proposal are available on the city's website.

The building was erected in 1936 as a factory for hand lotion. It's been on the National Register of Historic Places for almost 40 years.

A large crowd filled the city council chambers May 2 for the council's first discussion of the proposal, with more waiting in the hallway outside. The room seats 330 people.

The plan commission will take testimony regarding the developer's request to amend the city's zoning map for the property and for modifications regarding the mix of uses in the building, windows, entrances, parking supply and landscaping. It will also review the proposed design.

Opponents say the intersection can't safely handle the residential traffic that would come from the apartments. The building now contains businesses. Some opponents question whether there will be enough parking.

And on social media and other discussions, people have said they don't want government-subsidized housing built there. The developer has received an allocation of federal housing tax credits for the project, so 64 of the apartments would be designated for people who make 60 percent or less of the area's median annual household income.

The Fox River Valley Initiative, which supports efforts to have more affordable housing in the area, hosted a meeting July 17 with the project's developer, the Evergreen Real Estate Group. A video of that meeting is on the yestocampana.com website.

People who want to speak about the development will have to attend in person.

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