My First Coralville City Council Meeting September 27, 2016

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Cardinal Realty ~ 319-400-0268

Residents Have Their Say At Public Hearing ~ Bridgewater Development, Coralville IA

A couple of weeks ago I got a letter from the City of Coralville informing me of a proposed development in an area that backs up to my house and my neighborhood. It was a two liner, and included a plan of the proposed Bridgewater Development. I'm a Realtor®. I'm also a Homeowner. I was a bit torn about what I thought about this plan. (2 lines is hardly enough info to form an opinion on). On the one side I often walk in that neighborhood and with my Realtor® hat on had often wondered what the hold up was in developing what is a prime piece of land in a prime Coralville location. On the other hand, as a homeowner I'm not fussed on the idea of having the view of my wooded back yard spoilt with apartments about 200+ feet away. You see my dilemma, right?

So anyway, off I march to the city council meeting scheduled for 6.30pm yesterday evening. And was that a good decision! I might have thought I had a dilemma before I went to the council meeting. I sure don't now!

What did I learn? I learned there's a lot of work to be done to get a project in front of the Coralville City Council and to get it approved. I also learned that residents impacted by the project do have a voice. In fact yesterday the voice of my neighbors living on the access road to the Bridgewater Development were heard and only part of the project was approved. 

What was the takeaway from yesterday's meeting? I went in there thinking that the project would be rubber stamped. It wasn't. An excellent presentation from my neighbors saw to that. (They were so well prepared they actually had me thinking about Hillary!) There is no doubt, there are outstanding questions about putting 4 apartment buildings, each with 36 units in a neighborhood that otherwise only has single family homes. (A very low percentage of the development will be single family homes, the rest will be a combination of town homes, condos and the aforementioned apartments). There are even more questions regarding where all that traffic will go. To put it another way, does the neighborhood even have the infastructure to cope with going from a low density to a high density environment?

There are no answers to these questions in this blog post. We will have to wait and see how this plays out. This is not the end of the story. In fact it's just the beginning...


For Coralville Residents interested in sitting in on the Council Meetings, the Coralville City Council meets on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month at 6.30pm. (Details in the link). And if you get a 2 liner with notice of possible changes in your neighborhood, I definitely recommend sitting in. I am a much smarter cookie today than I was yesterday!  


Posted by

Denise Hamlin, Realtor®


CARDINAL Realty, Coralville IA 

Licensed to Sell Real Estate in the State of Iowa


Helping Happy Clients Make Smart Choices 

Iowa City Area Real Estate Services


Please remember that opinions expressed in my blog are just that - opinions - not fact
For legal or accounting advice please consult with a professional
Although the information provided is deemed reliable, it's not guaranteed


Comments (10)

Florida Tolbert Team Keller Williams Advantage
Keller Williams Advantage III Realty in Lake Nona - Orlando, FL
Keller Williams Land Luxury Division Specialist

Our surprise announcement was shorter...

ELECTRIC TRAFFIC SIGNS:  1/2 cent sales tax, Civic Center, Mon 7 PM

After our city raised our property taxes 30% last year to make up for the mistakes of the previous councils investments, you better believe this sign was enough to pack a house.   

Sep 28, 2016 11:02 AM
Denise Hamlin, Broker/Owner

That really wasn't a lot of notice! 

Sep 28, 2016 11:31 AM
Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

I like to hear about people venturing out and becoming part of the process of it all. It's a good step!

Sep 28, 2016 04:30 PM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

Thanks for sharing your experience. Participation in public meetings is good for business.

Sep 29, 2016 02:12 AM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Denise, I have been to many a Political Meetings, Los Angeles, Marina Del Rey, Beverly Hills, the reality is the politicians put on a good show, but all the do is delay the project... Developers understand this and play the game... they act all upset... I could tell you me:))Endre

Sep 29, 2016 03:36 PM
Denise Hamlin, Broker/Owner
Cardinal Realty ~ 319-400-0268 - Iowa City, IA
Helping Happy Clients Make Smart Choices

Endre Barath, Jr. I'm not remotely surprised to hear about your experiences in this area Endre. This may be my first time, but I'm under no illusion about our chances of success in changing anything. Nonetheless, I still feel the need to question some of the decisions being made. They just don't stand the common sense test for me. Although I really don't know why I think politics and common sense belong in the same sentence. Apparently I set the bar pretty high. (Or I'm a dreamer). :)

Sep 30, 2016 01:25 AM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Denise just checking in hope your area is not as political and sneaky as ours, Endre

Oct 06, 2016 11:45 AM
Denise Hamlin, Broker/Owner
Cardinal Realty ~ 319-400-0268 - Iowa City, IA
Helping Happy Clients Make Smart Choices

Endre Barath, Jr. Funnily enough I was thinking about your comments when I went to the planning and zoning meeting last night. No surprises so far. In fact quite the opposite. They had another public hearing for the commercial part of the Bridgewater Project that got approved last night. There's another Council Meeting set for the 25th where the more controversial residential part is on the menu again. I genuinely have the feeling the process is working as intended at this point. There's still time for me to be disappointed, but for now I remain cautiously optimistic that we won't experience any political sneakiness. :) ~ Denise


Oct 06, 2016 12:12 PM
Gene Mundt, IL/WI Mortgage Originator - FHA/VA/Conv/Jumbo/Portfolio/Refi
NMLS #216987, IL Lic. 031.0006220, WI Licensed. APMC NMLS #175656 - New Lenox, IL
708.921.6331 - 40+ yrs experience

I salute you and your attendance at the Coralville City Council meeting, Denise Hamlin.  As a former Village Board Member, I can attest to the fact that residents don't take the time or show the interest to do so as often as they should.  Applause for you!  Glad that you found your local government is listening to its residents and weighing their input.  

Go Hawkeyes!  (Our oldest son is an Univ. of Iowa graduate)


Oct 09, 2016 06:57 AM
Denise Hamlin, Broker/Owner

Thanks Gene. I'm actually enjoying being part of the process. It's good to see how things work. 

Both of my sons are U of I Grads too. Even if that hadn't been the case, it's impossible to live here and NOT know how important the Hawkeyes are - Not just in IC, but throughout Iowa. (And beyond). Go Hawks!

Oct 13, 2016 05:28 AM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

I hope you are enjoying a most productive autumn.

Thanks for commenting on my blog today.

Oct 13, 2016 05:27 AM
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good Morning Denise -  it is always a better community when all are involved in the process.  I am sure that it will a better outcome.

Nov 21, 2016 09:42 PM