The solutions to housing problems are never easy to come by.
At a time when many people are calling for better housing in Orem, the City Council has made at least a small effort to respond.Despite a recommendation from the city's Planning Commission to reject it, the council approved a plan for Rosecrest, a development at 535 S. Main, geared toward people who are retired or near retirement.
Councilwoman Joyce Johnson said, "I usually don't disagree with the Planning Commission, but this time I feel differently."
The Planning Commission recommended that the council reject the plan on the grounds that there weren't enough amenities (play areas, barbecue pits, swimming pools) in the development.
"The people coming to this type of development don't want regular amenities," Johnson said. They only want good stairs, covered parking and a lighted area, he said.
Most of the council seemed to agree that, in spite of the Planning Commission recommendation, the development was a good idea.
Rosecrest developer, Paul Ferguson, of Ferg-N-Sons developers, said people are waiting in line to live in a development like Rosecrest.
Daryl Berlin, Orem city manager, said a development like this may not help solve the housing shortage, since many are looking for low-cost housing in the city.
"We need to look at the issues because this development removes another area that is available for low-income housing," he said.
But Johnson said, "This would be a good balance to the other low-cost housing in the area."
Some neighbors of the proposed project came to the meeting with concerns about a possible increase in traffic from the new 34-unit project. One neighbor suggested that improvements on Main Street could alleviate some of the problems.
Mayor S. Blaine Willes said these things would be discussed and that he is in favor of the project because he has seen other developments by Ferguson and they are all kept in good order.