The Grace Baptist Church in Charlottetown is hoping its plan to build an apartment complex on its land will provide affordable housing for seniors. But people who live nearby say the development could be a major headache.

The plan is to build a 49-unit building in an area that is currently zoned institutional. The city would have to approve a zoning change to apartment-residential.

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Pastor Stephen Bray says there's an immediate need for affordable seniors housing in the area. (CBC)

One-third of the units would be for lower-income tenants.

"It seems that the number one need in our community is for seniors housing," said Pastor Stephen Bray.

"Ultimately we just want to build the facility and pay the bills because we're a non-profit. It's our mission as a church."

Residents concerned

But some people who live nearby don’t like the idea of a large apartment building and parking lot in the area.

"Traffic flow is a real problem being a residential neighbourhood," said Darragh Mogan, who is opposed to the project. "We want safe traffic conditions, and they won’t be with this complex being put in."

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The proposed building would include 49 units for seniors. (CBC)

About 125 people have signed a petition against rezoning the land.

"It’s a major concern," said Charlie Wilkinson. "If anything, this property should be rezoned recreational, not residential."

Other neighbours say they’re worried about the effect on a nearby creek, which flows just below the property.

The Church says even if it gets approval, it will consider all sides before going ahead.

"We're hoping that maybe after we share our vision and share our heart, our neighbourhood will understand we're trying to be very sensitive to their homes, property value, traffic flow," said Bray.