There are worse things than living next door to college students. They, most of them, are solid citizens who are investing their own money in building a stronger future for our community. So we’re puzzled why the Twin Falls Planning and Zoning Commission would flatly reject the College of Southern Idaho’s plans to build a 40-apartment complex for students near the eastern edge of the campus.
P&Z voted unanimously this week to say no after residents of the Green Acres Subdivision, which would border the southern side of the complex, objected to the proposal, citing potential noise, lights, traffic and privacy concerns. CSI can appeal the commission’s decision to the City Council.
And it should. This is one of those not-in-my-backyard issues that doesn’t hold up to scrutiny.
This is not a honky-tonk or a high school going up next door, but a residential center for adults who are focused on getting an education. Thousands of CSI students live in private residences in Twin Falls, and in the nearby college-owned Northview Apartments, without disturbing their neighbors.
If the school can’t construct housing its students need near CSI, then where is it supposed to build? Miles away in the countryside, resulting in even more vehicles on the already packed campus and more traffic on Falls Avenue, Washington Street North and North College Road?
The $4.7 million project would provide construction jobs that Twin Falls needs, and do it with minimal impact on nearby residents.
CSI has a 45-year track record of being a good neighbor, and it’s earned the benefit of a doubt on this project.