500+ home subdivision approved near Chaney’s Dairy Barn, residents express concern

Published: Sep. 21, 2021 at 3:59 PM CDT
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WARREN COUNTY, Ky. (WBKO) - Last week, the Planning and Zoning Commission voted 7-0 to approve rezoning which would result in a new subdivision development off South McElwain Road and Nashville Road near Chaney’s Dairy Barn.

As a man rides a horse down South McElwain Road and sounds of nature echo through the agricultural greenspace, resident Amy Smith uses these sights and sounds as examples of what the development will be replacing.

“It’s going to look like a sea of homes right here,” Smith points out.

The development on the 263-acres of land is expected to have about 532 lots of 1,800 square foot residential homes.

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Approval for Warren Co. subdivision development.
Approval for Warren Co. subdivision development.(WBKO)

“Five hundred 1,800 square foot homes on a third of an acre lots is going to make this area no longer rural, it’s going to be very populated,” expressed Smith.

According to the future land-use map, the development would surround the multi-generational business of Chaney’s Dairy Barn. No stranger to attending public hearings and speaking out, owner Carl Chaney attended last week’s meeting to express his disdain for the project.

“It is still remarkable to me that the rights of those yet to live in an area, trump the rights of those that had been there for generations. I am not oblivious to growth. I did not fight 31-W. They took part of our property. I understand that we needed a bigger road because we’ve got more cars. We have no say in who, what someone does with their property. However, we do have the right that when those changes affect our property to speak out. So this is the third time I’ve done that,” said Chaney during the public hearing.

Between heavy farm equipment, a nearby pond and livestock, Chaney cites liability concerns for his business due to the close proximity of the development.

“Can you imagine a small child or group of young children at night trespassing onto our property, drowning in our lagoon and the lifelong impact that not only will have on their family-- but on ours?” asked Chaney.

Due to the liability concern, the landowners and Chaney have developed a compromise to develop a tall barbwire fence that would sit between the development and the farm.

Meanwhile, the front of Smith’s home would look out onto the new development. She holds pages of research as she discusses the nearby Nature Preserve which would be impacted by the construction.

“It (the preserve) has seven endangered species that are registered on the national endangered species list that are known to reside in and around that area. You put 500 homes right up against that nature preserve and it is going to be very detrimental to their habitat,” expressed Smith.

Part of the development plan also includes widening South McElwain Road from 16 feet to a minimum of 20 feet.

The final approval for the development will go through the Warren County Fiscal Court.

The full Planning and Zoning meeting from September can be viewed below.

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