Montgomery lawsuit challenges zoning decision

October 28, 2003|LIZ MAPLES

As Danville Mayor John Bowling pushes for sewerage to the south side of the Danville bypass for development, a lawsuit against the city, filed because it blocked development there, pushes closer to trial.

In May, Mike Montgomery filed a lawsuit in Boyle Circuit Court that appeals the City Commission and Danville-Boyle Planning and Zoning Commission's decision not to change the zoning of Montgomery's land from agriculture to highway commercial.

Montgomery wanted to build a planned community with shops, offices and homes. To begin, he wanted to rezone 73 acres to build a shopping center.

Montgomery's attorney, Rena Wiseman, has until Friday to file a brief about his case. P&Z and the city have until Dec. 1 to file a brief. Wiseman has until Dec. 16 to file a reply. Then the court will set a trial date.


The zoning was denied, by both government bodies, because they said there was no change in the area since Montgomery asked for a zone change in 1999.

Montgomery's lawsuit also claims that:

* his land is not suitable for agriculture, but is suitable for highway commercial;

* the area, according to the future land use plan, would eventually be zoned highway commercial;

* Danville has experienced major changes since the first zone change was denied; and,

* Montgomery was denied due process.

P&Z and the city filed a response to the lawsuit that claims:

* there was no evidence of substantial changes to the south side of the bypass since it denied the 1999 zone change;

* to change the zoning would not agree with the city's future plan for that area; and,

* there is no compelling need for highway commercial land in Danville.

Attorneys for P&Z and the city asked that the lawsuit be dismissed, but that motion was denied.

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