Protect Creekside in Anna
We are residents of Creekside subdivision here in Anna, TX. When the development started on the NE corner of the 75 and White the residents’ concerns were ignored and development has continued unabated.
We attended the Planning commission’s meeting last night and again were very frustrated and dismayed by the commission’s disregard for our concerns. They voted to approve the building of a four story Holiday Inn Express in the area that will be very visible and will cause creek bed erosion and loss of privacy for the homes in Creekside. It is inconceivable that a proposed three story hospital was denied building in this same area several years ago but a four story hotel, which will be much more invasive and polluting, was approved.
Our concerns (to name a few) are as follows:
- Traffic congestion, it is already life threatening to take the exit from the 75 to White Street at certain times of day, in fact it has resulted in loss of life in that area on several occasions. The presence of the truck stops allows ingress and exit of very large, slow vehicles that causes very unsafe conditions. In addition, we have learned that the speed limit on White is to be increased to 55 mph, making an already bad issue even worse.
- Unacceptable Noise and Pollution – Semi-trucks in the area cause considerable noise and diesel fume pollution, allowing them to bring their trucks even closer to Creekside will only increase the loss of quality of living for homeowners in Creekside. The commission added a codicil to the SUPs saying trucks can’t idle or park but that won’t stop them from driving through OR parking for periods of time.
- Loss of privacy – the hotel will have windows that will look directly into the back yards and homes of Creekside Residents. There is a tree line there BUT in the fall, winter and spring the lack of foliage allows clear visual access into the resident’s yards and homes from this area where the hotel is proposed to be.
- Increase of Crime-Hotels in this price range will only bring crime to our city, there are no attractions for someone to stop in Anna for, and people traveling will seek hotels in larger cities and by-pass Anna, leaving the hotel to be occupied by less desirable persons. The hotel developer himself admitted that crime and drugs are an issue for them!!
- Creek concerns – the erosion of the creek bed is already a huge concern for Creekside homeowners since the installation of the huge parking lot and the Walmart and other retail stores. All the water and trash is running off into the creek causing failure of the creek bed sides and the loss of property in the back yards of several homeowners in Creekside. All a council member has to do is walk the trail between Creekside and the creek to ascertain that this is a fact. A situation will only become worse. We were told a “park will be built” and a run off drain are in the plans; however no dates to install these remedies were set, leaving Creekside with problems of increasing severity.
- Wildlife displacement from creek – we who live in Creekside are already seeing and experiencing an increase in vermin and wildlife seeking refuge from the rising water and increase of garbage in the creek by coming up into Creekside. We have many many reports of venomous snakes, rats, mice, opossum, raccoons and other animals not only invading our yards but invading our homes. In addition, fluctuating waters from the creek can result in standing waters leaving us at risk for Zika and mosquito and fly infestation, again, we in Creekside have seen increases in these problems in the last months since the parking lot and retail businesses have been built.
- Lack of adequate Anna Fire Equipment – irregardless of what was presented to the Commission last night; Anna Fire Department does not have a ladder truck and is NOT equipped to fight a fire in a four story building. The argument presented was that the “fire will be fought from the bottom of the building”. This defies common sense and is a feeble reason for a potential loss of life to happen. As a former fireman I can tell you this is a disaster waiting to happen.
- Negative effect on property value – historically and in every case (speaking as realtors with over a decade of experience in this area) whenever you build retail and hotel and apartment buildings next to a subdivision of single family homes the property value of the single family homes will be negatively affected. Not only that but with lower property values the quality of property maintenance will drop as well. Creekside already has a problem with residents not maintaining their properties because we are residents in a lower income bracket. With a drop in value you will attract less desirable homeowners who will only acerbate the issue and will perpetuate a much less desirable area to live in.
- Personal security – again historically (and speaking with the experience of realtors) when you put a high concentration of retail and hotel development next to a residential subdivision you are inviting criminals in droves. Creekside residents were in tears trying to persuade the commission not to expose them to criminals that will be brought in by the building of a hotel to be added to the truck stops that are already present and invite criminal activity. Homeowners and residents along Creekview have actually witnessed people crossing the creek from Walmart and trying to access their back yards. So the contention that the creek bed is a deterrent to trespassers is blatantly false.
Is this the face of Anna that you want to present to new residents and developers? That you have no thought and consideration for current residents? Anna is not being developed with a view towards the future and a concern for current homeowners and residents. White Street is starting to look like one long strip mall. The sound barrier installed by TxDot is a complete eyesore and is a hideous color. We very much doubt that this hotel development would be even considered if the subdivision had higher value homes in it but because these are lower valued properties our rights to enjoyment of our property, our quality of life and the right to have our property values maintained are ignored. We were told last night that we all knew that this development would happen when we bought our homes. That is absolutely not true; no one buys a home knowing that or with a realtor stating that there might be a four story hotel being built in the backyard of your house. And the builder of this subdivision did NOT tell residents that the greenbelt on the other side of the creek was being deeded to the city. When the Walmart was proposed was the first time any of us found out that our Creekside right to the greenbelt had been given away. We were told (as recent as two years ago when we bought our house) that the greenbelt was to be maintained in perpetuity, was owned by Creekside homeowners and would never be disturbed.
Try walking in our shoes, or better yet, live in our homes. The noise, light, dust and trash pollution and vermin invasion is already unacceptable. Would you want to live in a home where transient travelers could look right into your bedroom windows and backyard and your privacy and quality of life was destroyed by the sound and smell of semi-trucks 24/7/365? If you cannot say a resounding “no” then you are being dishonest.