Springfield home at center of heated debate boarded up

Published: Sep. 19, 2022 at 9:52 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - A historic Springfield home on the corner of Sunshine and National at the center of a heated debate between developers and people living in University Heights has been boarded up.

Ralph Duda and former NBA player Anthony Toliver own several houses on the corner. They want to rezone the area so they can develop businesses. Since applying for demolition permits on Sept, 15 for several homes at the intersection, the property on the corner has been broken into, and a big heart with the phrase “Love Your Neighbor” was spray painted on the front of the house, replacing the iconic red door the house has become known for.

”For a neighbor of University Heights to think they can come onto our property and paint on our property just boggles my mind. And I’m not saying it’s a neighbor from University Heights. I’m assuming it’s a neighbor from University Heights.” Duda said.

“They’re the coins of our neighborhood. They’re the beginning, they’re the opening, they’re the announcement that, hey, we’re historic. And we have a lot to show here.” Said Rebecca GiIlmore, a 60-plus-year resident of Springfield. ”When you take them down, you put some modern storefront in there, which is my understanding of what they’re doing. It’s just destroying the whole atmosphere.”

“I just want to say, please respect our property. I love your crazy face 😘 your neighbor, what a great phrase to put on a high-traffic spot. But this is private property.” Duda said, “It’s not safe. A lot of these nails, we were putting them in, he was like putting nails in bread. The wood’s rotten. So some of this stuff could fall on you at any time.”

The next meeting to discuss the future of the rezoning will take place in early October.

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