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home : opinions : editorials December 17, 2014

10/15/2013 6:02:00 AM
Editorial: What's important to NAU officials?
The Daily Courier

A piece of news from the Associated Press spells pending doom for some Flagstaff residents; however, its underlying message is much bigger than what's on the surface.

A company's plan to build multifamily housing for Northern Arizona University students will result in eviction for low-income residents of a trailer park, Arrowhead Village, that now occupies part of the site.

Residents there have learned that the project, which is awaiting rezoning approval by the city, would force them out. Notices would begin going out Dec. 26, giving them 180 to vacate, according to the Arizona Daily Sun.

The company wants to build two multistory buildings of varying heights, targeting university students. "We have properties under contract. The school is excited about it. We are excited about the market," a senior vice president for the developer said.

The key words there are "the school is excited about it."

"I was horrified that they would give someone that type of notice the day after Christmas," Flagstaff Vice Mayor Carol Evans said. "I was horrified at the delivery that they spent the majority of the time selling the project to people who could never afford it."

Further, rewind to 2012 when the NFL's Arizona Cardinals were mulling a shift from their historic spring training home of NAU and Flagstaff to Prescott or Glendale.

While Glendale won that battle, the war smoldered - with accusations that NAU did little to keep the Cardinals in Flagstaff, city and team officials told The Daily Courier. The loss amounts to an economic impact of gigantic proportions.

There we had the school allegedly not helping the city, and now the school's needs are being put ahead of residents who can least afford it.

The picture is coming into focus. Is this the lull before - or after - the storm with NAU President John Haeger's pending departure? Are NAU's priorities going to shift for Prescott Valley next - also home to an NAU campus?

Too many questions and not enough answers.

Calls to NAU were not immediately returned on Monday.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Article comment by: Gottah Goah

People who live next to the train tracks in Flagstaff say after six months you do not "hear" the trains. The property mentioned here is a good 2 city blocks from the tracks. Google it!

Posted: Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Article comment by: Get rid of Trailer Park NOW

These are RENTERS that are given 180 days to move! See Ya! Be gone like the eyesore you live in! Thank you developers for helping to clean up Flagstaff. Go park your trailer in Williams- and quit whining.

Posted: Tuesday, October 15, 2013
Article comment by: 60 Grit

This seems to be, frankly, none of our business. The reason the property has never been used for more than mobile home rental sites is primarily because it's literally feet from the railroad tracks. If you spent much time in Flagstaff (I lived there for two years a while back) you'd know that about 80 trains pass through a day -- 24/7. The trains are not easy to ignore, so it's not good for hotel or single-family dwellings. I think NAU housing is a smart choice for that land, but it no be my business.

Posted: Tuesday, October 15, 2013
Article comment by: Gwen Brun

First, NAU isn't part of this project and wasn't asked for a comment or consultation on the Arizona Daily Sun story, much like for your editorial. Second, the Daily Sun ran a correction today stating such. You should check your facts.

NAU's partnership with Yavapai College is a benefit to Prescott. You should delete this editorial and apologize to the university that has been a great partner to bring educational opportunities to Prescott residents. Shame on you.

Posted: Tuesday, October 15, 2013
Article comment by: Greed, Greed, Greed!

Too Much Greed! Not enough Love!

Posted: Tuesday, October 15, 2013
Article comment by: Just Sayin'

I was part of Flagstaff's development review team, but now I am glad that I am not! Two of many reasons: 1. The city was against NAU erecting a "small" monument sign on a corner of NAU parking lot (state) property. What gall! NAU instead, put up an eight story hotel there! Their right Ha!. 2. The city will not stop these poor people from being evicted. What is their thinking? The Cardinal's we're smart to leave.

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