I live two blocks from the University of Louisiana on a street that is largely populated by students. They are polite, respectful and watch my house when I am away. The vision of non-stop drunken parties and speeding vehicles [at a proposed new development near Freetown] just isn't true ("Town Brawl," June 21).

I am about seven blocks and several light years away from the site in question. Chained up dogs, garbage piles, overgrown lots, run down trailers and marginal housing assault the eye. I question the claim of "less drug dealers." I would not walk my dog in the daytime there, and I challenge any of the council members that will probably vote against development to keep their seat in an election year to take a stroll about 11 p.m. and see how safe they feel.

An upscale apartment complex and college students won't "ruin" the neighborhood. They might have reason to feel their property and person to be in danger should they move here. The Neighborhood 7 plan is certainly ambitious. I doubt there is a neighborhood anywhere in the United States that wouldn't love it.

The bottom line is it's pie in the sky, and there is no one to pay for it. At a time when Lafayette is struggling for money to build roads, I don't think a jazz amphitheater is going to get too high on the agenda. I challenge The Independent Weekly to send a good cameraman and take some pictures of the other side of this neighborhood, one which new development can only improve.

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