Ascension Parish Planning Commission approves three subdivisions

Michael Tortorich

Ascension Parish President Clint Cointment released a statement Jan. 14 addressing residents’ concerns over three subdivision plats - two residential and one commercial - that were approved by the parish’s Planning Commission.

The Ascension Parish Planning Commission met virtually Jan. 13.

The statement stemmed from the Jan. 13 planning commission meeting, which lasted nearly three hours and began with the reading of emails from several concerned residents.

Many of those who emailed opposed the plans due to the condition of the roads, and the effect the addition would have on the infrastructure of the area. The commission also took phone calls from concerned residents.

The three subdivisions were:

-- Windermere Crossing, which is a 103-lot preliminary plat. The subdivision is planned for the northern side of Cannon Road, just west of Roddy Road.

-- Clare Court, a 37-lot development proposed to the north of Cornerview Road, just west of the Interstate 10 overpass.

-- And the commercial subdivision approved was Buzzard Roost, a 120-acre industrial park.

Cointment, in the statement, said the parish’s Development Code lacks appropriate ordinances that would have enabled the commission to reject one or all of the subdivisions.

He went on to mention that planning commissioners are placed in a difficult position where they are forced to consider preliminary plats on property unsuitable for major subdivision development.

“Our volunteer commission must balance the rights of landowners against those of neighboring residents, a thankless job if ever there was one,” Cointment stated. 

Developing responsibly has been hampered by unresolved drainage concerns, under-sized roads, and inefficient means of treating sewage, he added.

“I pledge to you, the residents of Ascension Parish, that my administration will do everything in its power to change the Development Code and tighten restrictions on development. Those changes will be seeking to retain Ascension’s rural character, while ensuring the necessary infrastructure is in place before new development is approved,” Cointment concluded.

Some parish residents responded to the issue online last week, including Michelle Lipoma, who commented on the Weekly Citizen’s Facebook post sharing the president’s statement.

“We are so tired of political talk and no action,” she wrote. “You spoke of retaining the rural character of Ascension Parish? I think that character is long gone. It seems the people in ‘power’ are always behind the eight-ball and the tax-paying residents have to sit by and endure the consequences.”