Residents in College Park’s North Autoville and Cherry Hill areas said they have concerns about a proposed multi-family development disrupting their “quiet” residential neighborhood.

Community members gathered Tuesday night at the Chinese Bible Church of College Park to discuss a proposed housing development on Autoville Drive. Most residents at the meeting said they were worried about the development, citing possible issues with student renters, traffic and altering the character of their neighborhood.

The development would contain 10 to 14 units split among five or seven two-story buildings. Each unit would contain two bedrooms and have at least 1.5 parking spaces, according to Edward Gibbs, the property’s attorney.

If approved, the housing complex would be Donan Enterprises LLC’s first development.

Donan Enterprises bought the half-acre property in 2017. A single-family home currently sits on the land.

The Autoville neighborhood sits south of the College Park Marketplace shopping center and behind large hotels on Route 1.

College Park resident and former city council member Mary Cook, who lives in Cherry Hill — a neighborhood adjacent to Autoville — said Autoville and the surrounding area stand out from the rest of the city.

“North Autoville is what College Park used to be,” Cook said.

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Other Cherry Hill and Autoville residents joined Cook on Tuesday in sharing a plethora of concerns about this proposed development and how it could disrupt their quiet neighborhood.

There is only one main entrance to the section of Autoville Drive the development would lay on, off of Cherry Hill Road. Currently, there is no right of way to turn off Cherry Hill Road, and residents voiced concerns that a housing development would worsen traffic.

One person at the meeting said Autoville Drive residents cannot turn onto Cherry Hill Road during certain times of the day. Gibbs said developers will conduct a transportation study to address these concerns.

While the development plans include parking underneath the structure, neighborhood residents said that might not be enough to keep cars from crowding Autoville Drive.

District 1 council member Alan Hew, who lives in Autoville, also voiced concerns over construction equipment and crews taking over the street.

Lisa Ealley, a resident of the Hollywood neighborhood, said she wants to stand with her neighbors against the development.

Ealley said she wants nature in the neighborhood to be preserved. More buildings like the one proposed would make the area overpopulated and would worsen existing traffic problems, she said.

“This is an area that really could be preserved … it’s a quiet neighborhood,” Ealley said. “Maybe we could just let this go someplace else.”

Many residents were also concerned about the possibility of student renters entering the neighborhood, they said.

District 4 council member Maria Mackie proposed the developer advertise the building to senior citizens to fill a missing gap in College Park housing. That would also prevent otherwise inevitable student renters, Mackie said.

Donan Enterprises does not yet know if this property would be mostly used by student renters or other parties.

But Gibbs said he believes that students are likely not a target market for the development.

Mackie also echoed a common concern among community members that the development could cause a resurgence of issues that came with a nearby development on Cherokee Street.

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Renters who live in townhouses on Cherokee Street park on the street, according to Mackie, and there are frequent arguments between neighborhood residents and renters.

“I’m seeing all these horrific things that we went through with that and I’m concerned that we’re going to have a repeat here, even though it’s a smaller scale,” Mackie said at the meeting.

Due to recent rezoning, the parcel of land that would house the development is not designated for single-family homes, according to Gibbs. The land is instead designated for a “neighborhood activity center,” which Gibbs said encourages more dense development.

But to address concerns, the developers hope to get the building approved under the old zoning, which is allowed until April. This would allow for less dense development.

The property owner is “hopeful that she could do something that would be sensitive and wouldn’t be a burden to the community,” Gibbs said.

Cook and other residents want developers and local officials to ensure that the final plan works for everyone in the neighborhood.

“We have known all along that something would probably be built on Autoville, we just want to minimize the impact,” Cook said.

The development is still in early planning stages and developers have yet to submit a preliminary subdivision plan to the county. After that, developers will submit a detailed site plan to county and city officials.