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Logan council approves housing unit, blocking some residents’ views of Utah State

By Miranda Tilley
Nov. 16, 2016

The Logan City Council on Tuesday approved a new student housing unit near Utah State University — over the objections of some residents who said their cherished views of Old Main would be blocked.

The 55-foot-tall campus residential unit will be built on 6th East near Utah State University.

Jan Nyman, a resident of Adams neighborhood, said the complex will be an “eyesore to the community and the university.”

Neighbor Marilyn Griffin said she would “really like to not see any of these big buildings in front of Old Main.”

The residents’ concerns sparked a conversation about protecting key viewsheds — like those including Utah State’s oldest and most iconic building.

Mike DeSimone, Logan’s community development director, said the city has never defined specific views, like Old Main, that need to be protected.

DeSimone said the intent of the plan for the complex was to intensify housing for students near campus. And that, he said, would alleviate another common complaint among Logan residents.

“When the concept was derived, it was thought that less students would bring cars since they can walk,” DeSimone said. 

Councilman Tom Jensen noted that Logan is a university town, which requires housing units for students near the university. Jensen also hopes the new unit will reduce the number of students who bring vehicles to school, creating less parked vehicles in neighborhoods surrounding campus.

But Councilwoman Jeannie Simmonds said the new unit will create “a wall of students,” and Councilwoman Holly Daines, while ultimately voting in favor of approving the unit, noted that even if the students housed at the unit do walk to class, they often “still have a car” that will be “parked all week.”

The matter passed 3-2, with Simmonds and Eugene Needham casting the dissenting votes.