Citizens For A Better Norwood

Monday, February 07, 2011

WNNA reconvenes, asks City officials for Montgomery Rd. PUD

After a 2-year+ hiatus, the West Norwood Neighborhood Association reconvened last week in response to residents’ concerns that predatory businesses could occupy vacant commercial properties on Montgomery Rd. Currently, the City has no legal mechanism to prevent these kinds of businesses from moving in. Newly-elected WNNA officers sent the letter below to Mayor Williams, City Council, the Building Dept. and the Law Director requesting a Planned Unit Development (click here for definition of PUD) in order to prohibit these kinds of businesses.

WNNA President Lynn Ellis will be addressing City Council about this issue at tomorrow night’s Council meeting. Anyone who supports the WNNA’s and residents’ effort to get a PUD is urged to attend the meeting and/or contact Lynn Ellis at

February 2, 2011

West Norwood Neighborhood Association has reconvened because of concerns about vacant businesses on Montgomery Rd. and surrounding areas and the effect that may have for West and South Norwood. Specifically, we are concerned about the potential for check cashing establishments, tattoo parlors, pawn shops, rent to own, massage parlors, adult book stores and other sexually oriented businesses occupying vacant buildings, buildings that are often adjacent to residences on side streets. Our opinion is that these are not and will never be an asset to any community, as they attract large numbers of people, providing opportunities for offenders and victims to cross paths, affording many opportunities for crime.

These are the questions that we have asked ourselves and would like you to consider:

-Would you want to live next to any of these types of businesses?
-Do these types of businesses revitalize or improve the quality of life in a neighborhood?
-Do these types of businesses attract quality people who will invest in their home and live here?
-Do these types of businesses enhance property values or depress them?
-Do these types of businesses hinder more beneficial development?
-Do these types of businesses attract like businesses?
-Is this the image we want for the City of Norwood?

We have talked with community members and neighbors near these vacant properties and they feel vulnerable and unprotected that, unlike other sections of the city, there is no mechanism to regulate or control what goes into these buildings. The only mechanism that we are aware of to provide this protection would be a PUD to be placed over the area spanning from Williams Avenue to Courtland Avenue down the side streets on the east and west sides of Montgomery Road for a standard city block. West Norwood Neighborhood Association was assured years ago that something would be put in place to protect these areas.

We consider this matter urgent and ask that a PUD or any other regulatory mechanism that accomplishes the same end be put in place as soon as possible. And in the meantime we ask that any applications submitted by any of these like businesses be put on hold until this matter is resolved.

Although we do understand that your time is limited due to the city’s financial difficulties and other issues, we respectfully request that you respond in writing to our organization by Thursday, February 10th.



West Norwood Neighborhood Association
Lynn Ellis, President
Vivian Graff, Vice President
Helen Wagner, Secretary