This is a case of NIMBY and fear of the unknown as neighbors are being organized to oppose the construction of a Women's Center shelter in a long vacant lot on Breen Avenue. The 7500 square foot structure would house women and the building conforms to the residential C zoning and was unanimously approved by the Planning Board.
Ironically, one Planning Board member lives adjacent to the site.
The fear is that a "crazy boyfriend" will seek out a woman staying there, although the existence of shelters elsewhere in the City do not support this fear.
The site once housed DiStefano's Florist and in recent years has remained vacant in what has long been a mixed use neighborhood.
There is a meeting at 6PM at the Italian American Club.
People are naturally concerned about neighbhorhood character and property values. However, since the proposed use conforms to zoning there is little legal basis for City Council to block it based solely on not liking the use.
City Council will have to act on the proposed site plan at an upcoming meeting.
Watertown Daily Times Neighors set meeting on proposed women’s shelter