In the last decade, St. Charles County has seen explosive growth with many residents leaving St. Louis County and other urban areas for a more quiet and safe way of life. Just in the last two years, St. Charles County has had an explosion of apartments, over a 300% increase. Currently there are approximately 33 apartment complexes that take advantage of the federal voucher system for HUD housing. Local leaders will say we need housing for younger people and lower income workers. These apartments are approved by municipal city council members and only one has been approved by St. Charles County Council.
There is currently a large development under consideration on property across from the Frontier Middle School and the Canine Country Farm property along Highway DD all the way up to Schwede Road. This developer approached me asking for four to six homes per acre, which I do not support and urged three acres per lot to maintain the rural atmosphere. At this point, the developer has approached the homeowners in a three-acre subdivision off Sommers Road and the owners of the cricket fields on Highway DD, attempting to have the property annexed into the city of O’Fallon. This development would bring hundreds of homes and destroy the natural beauty and character of our county.
These aggressive annexations and explosion of apartments is not good for St. Charles County. It brings heavy traffic and creates additional crime. It’s a zero-sum game and becomes a tax subsidy for other citizens in the county to maintain the roads and sewers, increase the necessary police officers to maintain safety and the extra burden on the school districts.
There are thousands of acres that make up the Busch Wildlife area of which citizens from all over come to enjoy for fishing, walking trails and managed wildlife hunts to maintain the wildlife habitat. Because managed wildlife hunts are allowed in the Busch Wildlife area, how dangerous would this be for high density developments surrounding this area? There needs to be state legislation drafted on these aggressive annexations, so we do not destroy the rural areas in this county.
It amazes me how many people move away from areas they do not like anymore due to crime and poor schools, among other things, but then bring the same ideology to their new environment that they just moved from.