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Yigo residents not favoring new mall

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by Janjeera Hail

Guam - "Not in our backyard."  That's what some Yigo residents are saying about a proposed commercial center in Yigo.   

Residents from the northern village and stakeholders are scheduled to meet this evening to discuss what the Guam Pinnacle Corporation is calling a "Village Center" - an 8,400 square foot commercial center - being planned in the heart of the village on the corner of Gayinero Road and Tun Luis Takano. 

A first public hearing was held in July, and Yigo mayor Bob Lizama says the response from residents was mostly negative.  "It could be any type of business: it could be a karaoke lounge, it could be a barber shop, beauty shop type of operation. It could be masseuse you know. And we don't want those types of businesses here and who's going to control is a concern," he stated.

The planners responded to concerns by modifying their plans - reducing the size from 12,800 square feet to 8,400, and the total number of parking spaces from 90 to 74.  But Lizama says the proximity to D.L. Perez Elementary School is a major concern, saying, "Kids from Marianas Terrace, kids from Tun Luis Takano are all going to be making their way to this commercial complex and without sidewalks - that's pretty much a concern. We want to see fruits."

And traffic.  Along Gayinero Road is a two-lane street, with no middle lane for drivers wanting to make left turns.  "Vehicles are going to stop to make left turns, then the vehicles behind that are backing-up traffic as it makes its way up the hill and simultaneously as vehicles that are negotiating that turn, that curve on the hill, not realizing that a vehicle is stopping to make a left turn - accidents may occur," projected the mayor.

The Guam Pinnacle Group is set to make their second appeal to residents tonight and will hopefully answer lingering questions about the feasibility of the project.  From there their application goes before the Yigo Municipal Planning Council on October 6 before reaching the Guam Land Use Commission for final approval.  If you've got questions or concerns, you may still be able have your voice heard.  Head down to the Yigo Senior Citizens Center, as the meeting begins at 6pm.

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