New Downtown apartment development raises concerns for residents

“This will destroy our quality of life.”
Published: Apr. 17, 2021 at 1:57 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - The loud sounds of tractors and excavators is how Shanna Licata found out about the new development that is being built Downtown.

“It is changing the whole element, we don’t have many precious gems left in Reno,” said Licata.

Licata has been living near Riverside Drive for nearly 10 years. She said waking up and being able to see the trees and the river from her living room is remarkable, but when she was told a 34 unit apartment complex was in the works, she realized her view would be gone.

“I feel like we weren’t involved and we were not considered, and we are not being respected,” Licata said.

Licata said this was a complete surprise. The City of Reno said the project did not require approval by the Planning Commission or City Council, developers went straight towards a building permit, which does not require public notice.

A group has been formed to save this unique area. Glenn Klupsack is part of the Reno Riverside Alliance. He said the project doesn’t even meet the proper zoning codes and he wants it to be in compliance with historic district codes.

“Let’s take a breath involve, let’s step back, involve the neighbors, involve the residents,” said Klupsack. “We are dealing with noise and pounding that we can feel in our basements.”

City of Reno staff said the project was submitted last year and approved based on zoning requirements at that time. There were no zoning limitations on the Historic Powning District impacting this project. In regards to parking concerns, city staff said the building will create minimal traffic and it does not require street improvements.

Brando Deriso said their voices and concerns need to be heard to come to an agreement with developers.

“You lose so much heart from your community if you don’t stop to think about what you are doing before you do it,” Deriso said.

City Staff said as long as the project follows all requirements the development is permitted and does not require a public hearing process.

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