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East Missoula residents want community development not more storage facilities

Posted at 6:38 PM, Nov 02, 2020

Citizens of East Missoula were shocked when they found out developers were attempting to put in more storage lockers in their community something, they say they already have plenty of.

"We don’t have many businesses out here there are a lot of families that live out here. There are a lot of better things we can do than putting more storage units in which we really don’t need," East Missoula resident Stephanie Lemberg said.

Residents of East Missoula said they only learned of the plans for another storage facility when a re-zoning proposal was brought before county commissioners. Many felt they were blindsided without an adequate chance to respond.

Citizens say that it’s another instance of East Missoulians not having a say in their own communities’ development.

"This is the center of our community, nearly three acres in the middle of East Missoula. We deserve a say here. We deserve better," East Missoula resident Erin O'Riordain said.

People who live in East Missoula said they would like to see development bring about restaurants and small business not more uninviting light industrial properties.

Citizens said small businesses run by East Missoula citizens should be given the chance to occupy the space in their own community.

"There are so many artists and small businesses and innovative creative people that are thinking outside the box and they should be given the opportunity to have a place in their own community to showcase these," O'Riordain added.

Something East Missoulians said they would love to see would be a market of some kind. Right now the only option in town is Ole’s unless you want to drive down the Highway to Missoula. Something that’s not so easy when winter hits.

Public comment is still available on the topic. County Commissioners vote on Thursday regarding the rezoning.