Published: May 02, 2013 7:04 PM EDT

CAPE CORAL, Fla. -- The city of Cape Coral is pushing to change zoning near Wilmington Parkway and Nelson Road, saying this will help with economic development. But a Cape Coral couple says this will hurt their neighborhood.

Katharyn Owen and Robert Diersing are collecting signatures with this petition: neighbors opposed to a zoning change.

The couple's house sits on the large piece of property: property that the city is pushing to rezone for marketplace residential. "It can be townhouses, condos, it can be duplexes, it can be a hotel mixed in with businesses," said Owen.

If that happens, they're afraid someone could build right up to the foot of their house. They also argue that type of zoning doesn't fit in their north Cape neighborhood, saying there's no utilities, and that businesses wouldn't want to build because of a lack of people.

"At the other side of that dead end is a preserve, no houses will ever be built there," Owen said.

But city documents say the rezoning would make the property consistent with its future land use plan, and would open the doors for commerical or mixed-use projects to be developed.

It also argues the zoning change would "promote the general welfare of the community."


The rezoning request was brought before the city's planning and zoning commission last month, which agreed with neighbors, saying the land needs to stay as is.


The couple will bring their petition before city council on Monday. That's the same day council is expected to decide the fate of these properties.