Student living remains a hot topic in Auburn, and during Tuesday’s first December meeting, city council members will discuss the conditional use approval of a private dormitory on Armstrong Street.

Conditional use means that this building would not, as is, traditionally be zoned for the proposed location. With a vote from the council, however, the building can be allowed.

The development was originally brought to the attention of the council in October but action was postponed so council members could have more time to review details. The owner of the property then asked for another extension to better meet development requirements.

The property, located on 355 Armstrong St., already was recommended for approval by the Auburn Planning Commission.

Buckaroo Enterprises, LLC has worked with the city to meet all requirements and voluntarily met with the Downtown Design Review Committee in November.

On Oct. 15, when the issue was first brought up, there were several complaints from citizens who did not want the dormitory approved.

“Our neighborhood would like to ask that this conditional use be denied for this proposed private dormitory development,” said Carolyn Carr, president of the neighborhood group covering Payne street, where Carr lives. “The neighborhood feels that it is out of scale and character with the nearby neighborhood for several reasons.”

The dormitory would hold 18 bedrooms and this was one of the reasons Carr said the neighborhood is against the development. Currently a two-bedroom house sits on that lot, she said.

Other businessThe city will vote on an agreement with Gonzalez-Strength and Associates Inc., for planned work on the Auburn Soccer Complex.

The project agreement would include services such as design, documents and the bidding of the project. The cost for the services provided by Gonzales-Strength and Associates Inc., is over $560,000.

The council will also vote on whether to approve an agreement with Auburn University to install a new traffic light at the intersection of South College Street and Thach Avenue.

The light is necessary for the Tony and Libba Rane Culinary Science Center Project. The light installation would cost the city $300,000. The city will also be responsible, if the agreement is passed, to fund future work on the light.

“The city of Auburn and Auburn University continue to work cooperatively to improve several intersections around campus,” said Alison Frazier, city engineer, in a memorandum to City Manager Jim Buston. “As you are aware, the University plans to begin the construction process on the 18-481-Northeast Campus-Utility Expansion-Rebid in December 2019 and the Tony and Libba Rane Culinary Science Center Project in February 2020.”

“In addition to the utility expansion, an updated traffic signal will be installed at the intersection of South College Street and Thach Avenue. The University included the traffic signal modification in the bid and the cost of the contribution to the University is based on the estimated costs of the work included in that project.”

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