The LDS church has cancelled plans to build a new nine story tower at the Provo Missionary Training Center and homeowners are pleasantly surprised.
An announcement in March to build caught the neighborhood off- guard; residents say that in the past the church and MTC always kept them in the loop on new construction.
Only a few months ago the LDS church first presidency approved the construction of a new one 160 foot building on Missionary Training Center property, but nearby homeowners wanted the church to explore other options.
Pleasant View homeowner Lorie Johnson said, “I felt like if…a decision maker at the church really knew the whole story, a different decision would have been made.”
Some homeowners say the building would lower their property value and cut back their view while others were excited to see the MTC expand.
Eighty five percent of the Pleasant View neighborhood signed a petition asking the MTC to explore different ways to expand. Earlier, the Provo city council prohibited any other construction more than five stories except for the proposed tower.
A statement by the LDS church says, “Church leaders have determined that due to a number of complexities and concerns, we will not move forward with the nine-story building originally proposed.”
They are looking to find a new solution to expand that involves the neighborhood, community, and church.
When the LDS church lowered the ages of missionary service, the community thought they had lost. However, after six months of petitions and legal research, the neighborhood says they finally got what they wanted.
“We have been fighting this since last March, and now to win, it’s kind of nice to win. We feel like we’ve won and we didn’t expect to win frankly,” said James Harris a Pleasant View homeowner.
“This has been the hardest thing I have ever done and I am so grateful that we can go back to the status quo and go back to the win-win situation for both the neighborhood and the church,” Johnson said.