BRYAN, Texas — Facing shouting residents, fireworks, and hours of public comment, the Bryan Planning and Zoning Commission voted unanimously, Thursday night, to recommend a proposal to the City Council that phases out manufactured homes from traditional residential communities.
Opponents of the proposed restriction on manufactured homes said it will limit low income housing options. Some residents say mobile homes are the only accommodations they can afford.
"Clearly this is going to limit [access to] low income housing," said one resident who spoke in the meeting. "The reason I was able to stop being homeless was because of a manufactured home."
"No ones getting kicked out of their mobile homes," said Jody Rodriguez, a member of the Planning and Zoning Commission who helped create the plan.
The proposal, now before the City Council, would ban the installation of manufactured homes in portions of Single Member Districts 1 and 2. Manufactured homes could still be installed in the city's mobile home parks.
Under the proposal, existing mobile homes in those areas could fully be replaced once more. After that, the property would no longer allow for a manufactured home.
"The effects of this won't be see for 50 years," Rodriguez added, referring to the life of two average mobile homes, as allowed in the proposal. "This is a glacial transition."
Mobile home residents in the meeting felt they were being segmented out of residential neighbors and their chosen, affordable homes barred from places in the city.
"The economy is fixing to get bad and we need to keep this mixed zoning so we can do something with [my] property," said one man.
The City points to statistics that say more than 80% of manufactured homes in Bryan are rented. They say their goal is to transition mobile homes out of certain areas and replace them with much needed affordable housing.
"What we're hearing from the citizens are 'what are our options,'" said Rodriquez. "[The City has] allotted $300,000 for the city to try and acquire lots and incentivize builders to put affordable houses on the ground."