People who live in West Knoxville's Pond Gap neighborhood are voicing their concerns about a 110-unit apartment complex proposed for Hollywood Road
A group of nearly 25 self-proclaimed "Pond Gappers" crowded the busy intersection of Hollywood and Sutherland Thursday night.
Neighbors of all ages came together for one common goal: "save the pond."
"We're against the development that calls for too many apartment units, 110, for our lovely pond property. That's where we get the name of Pond Gap," said neighborhood association president David Williams.
Williams said hundreds of people in the area are worried about this project, even though it's still in the early planning phases.
The Metropolitan Planning Commission says no plan has been submitted yet, just a proposal for a zoning change request that would allow an apartment complex to be built there.
The City Council unanimously approved the rezoning request on the first reading earlier this week.
Neighbors have met with the possible developer, and say the apartments are considered "workforce housing."
"We are the workforce they're talking about. We're not against workforce housing, but we have some real concerns about the volume," said neighbor Stacy Varon.
She said one of the biggest concerns is safety.
The MPC zoning proposal report states Hollywood Road's traffic could increase by about 1400 cars per day.
That's an estimate assuming the property is developed at its maximum potential.
The MPC says a more realistic number would be about 1035 more cars per day if this complex is built.
"For anyone who's ever driven on Hollywood, you know it's already congested," said Varon.
She worries about more kids walking to school with the increase in cars on the road.
The MPC reported Hollywood Road can handle the extra traffic, and staff expect sidewalks to be installed if the complex is built.
But neighbor's still aren't convinced.
"What are you gonna do about the flooding? The city has to clean up the storm drains," said Williams. "So a lot has to be done."
Pond Gappers are hoping to reach a compromise with the city and developers.
One idea is a complex with fewer units.
"We welcome people down here, but we can only take so many at a time," said Williams.
Neighbors are in contact with the developers, who are out of Nashville, and at least one city council member has come in person to see the Pond Gap area and hear concerns.
The group is planning to speak up again at the next MPC and city council meetings.
Until then, "save the pond" signs will be prominent on Hollywood Road and surrounding Pond Gap streets.