Columbus' St. Paul UMC expansion sparking concern - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Columbus' St. Paul UMC expansion sparking concern

(Source: Parker Branton/WTVM) (Source: Parker Branton/WTVM)
(Source: Jose Zozaya/WTVM) (Source: Jose Zozaya/WTVM)
(Source: Parker Branton/WTVM) (Source: Parker Branton/WTVM)
(Source: Parker Branton/WTVM) (Source: Parker Branton/WTVM)
COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -

Neighbors living near a local church in the Lake Bottom Park area are posting signs in their front yard in hopes to stop a new construction project.

St. Paul United Methodist Church is looking to close down a portion of Leonard Street to build a new youth building.

“They need to think about giving back a little bit too because it’s a church completely surrounded by residential. Just a little over push they need to relent some if we are going to give up some of our nice, scenic beauty." Longtime Lake Bottom Homeowner Bob Garrard is one of many near the church speaking out and putting up signs in the front yard against the church's construction project.

“The only influence the city can have would be if they deny them closing Leonard Street,” says Garrard.

“They’re following rules and regulations so it’s not a concern I think," says City Councilor Judy Thomas.

The proposed project will mean abandoning a portion of Leonard Street and tearing down a home that the church owns.

“Even if we do not abandon that street the church will move forward with their project and build parking lots and youth centers and those kinds of things they’ll just have to reconfigure a little bit but they’re going to move forward with this project,” says Thomas.

“It seems contrary to some of the goals of midtown to encourage residential yet to have some of the nonresidential uses expanding too much,” says Garrard.

News Leader 9 reached out to church administration about the project and they haven't gotten back with us yet.

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