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Bozeman residents ask city for public review of proposed Guthrie building development

The project is currently under administrative review only, leaving residents feeling unheard.
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Posted at 6:47 PM, Apr 02, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-03 11:05:49-04

BOZEMAN — A controversial new housing development on the corner of North Fifth Avenue and Villard Street has local residents fighting for representation.

"Residents of Bozeman would like the City Commission to reclaim the review of the Guthrie development from an administrative-only review to a public review," explains Daniel Carty, one concerned resident.

He says that administrative review happens behind closed doors, not allowing transparency or public review of developments that affect them.

"Given the past loss of trust between city residents and the City Commission, we’re asking that this be brought before the city commission as a gesture of trust between residents and the city," says Carty.

The Guthrie would be a 111-unit, 5-story apartment building. Each two-person unit will be 375 to 600 square feet and offer Murphy beds and a hotplate. Fifty percent of the units would be offered as affordable housing at about $1,684 a month. But some residents aren’t convinced.

"It’s proposed to have about 111 dwelling units and only about 30 parking spaces, so most of the parking will spill out onto neighborhood streets," says Carty.

Another concerned resident, Mckayla De Berdines, says, "In a block radius from Mendenhall to Peach Street, from Third to Seventh, only has 250 street parking spots right now. So, if you live here you wouldn’t have street parking."

In addition to parking concerns, residents say the building height, affordability, and emphasis on short-term residency goes against the midtown neighborhood’s values.

"And so, that type of residency limitation, or attraction if you will, does not bode well for the development of community within that neighborhood."

The project will also use affordable housing incentives, raising concerns from residents who claim the proposed rent would not actually be affordable.