|Updated: 6/21/2012 8:11 am
||Published: 6/20/2012 8:11 pm
The Little Rock Technology Park Authority revealed Wednesday that it will narrow down the three Tech Park sites under consideration right now within the next month. All three include taking homes by eminent domain.
Now, the Authority also wants your alternate site ideas. Choosing a site is at least six months out, and Wednesday, the Tech Park Authority heard from the engineering firm, students who studied the human impact of the project, and property owners who aren't necessarily against selling their homes to build the park.
Wednesday, engineers revealed that the Little Rock Technology Park will cost more than seven-million dollars in initial construction fees, not including home buyouts, for the three sites under consideration, right now.
Tuesday, Doctor Mary Good, chair of the Tech Park Authority, faced opposition from community members afraid of losing homes and against using taxpayer money to take those homes.
"I'm not too proud to beg, the Temptations told us we could do that. I would beg you. I would beg you. Please do not do to your neighbors what you would not have done to yourselves," said Judge Wendell Griffen at Tuesday's Little Rock Board of Directors meeting.
Most property owners who spoke Wednesday seemed open to the idea of moving.
"I do support the technology park being located in my neighborhood. According to the Pulaski County accessor website, our home is the only owner occupied home on Washington Street," said homeowner Gail Oyster.
Neighbors opposed to losing their homes formed a group to stop the Tech Park from taking over their neighborhoods. They live within the three sites, but now, they're able to submit their own ideas on where the park should go.
"We're going to get a lot of alternative site suggestions. In fact, once the announcement was made at the last meeting, we've already been contacted by several people," says Dr. Good.
one land owner even turned in an idea Wednesday night.
"Some land Southeast of the airport. This is probably premature, but it's with no houses," said Sam Raines.
The engineering firm expects to have its final report to the Tech Park Authority a week from Friday. Using that information, board members will narrow the three sites down to one, but that won't necessarily be the final choice.
With Tuesday's city ordinance passing, they can't choose a site for at least six months.
Dr. Good says people will be able to check out sites meeting all requirements on the Tech Park Authority's website.