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81-year-old homeowner may have her home taken away as part of Yorktown's downtown redevelopment

Posted: 6:50 PM, Nov 16, 2018
Updated: 2018-11-16 19:55:10-05

YORKTOWN, Ind. -- A Delaware County woman may have her home taken from her against her will as part of a downtown redevelopment project after the court ruled against her on Friday. 

Janice Ross says she doesn’t want to move.

Back in August, she spoke before a town meeting saying she would fight against Yorktown and their attempts to take her home through eminent domain.

“I was hoping to spend the rest of my life here,” Ross said in August. “Now the town wants to take it away from us.”

But on Friday, the court ruled against her in the battle to keep her home.

Ross’ neighbor, Bruce McFarland’s home isn’t on the chopping block yet, but he says he doesn’t agree with taking people’s property if they don’t want to leave.

His home is targeted for phase two of the redevelopment project.

“Don’t take people’s house that don’t want to sell them,” said McFarland. “This has been a neighborhood for 200 years. It’s still a neighborhood. To listen to the Redevelopment Commission, Yorktown is on the edge of death. Because there is a neighborhood back there? Because we still have our houses? Really? Is that why downtown is going to die? I don’t think so.”

The proposal would remake the downtown area to include a bridge over Buck Creek, near Murrow’s Meadow and a new town hall, parking and businesses.

“We looked at numerous possible places and solutions,” Heather Taylor, President of the Yorktown Redevelopment Commission said. “There isn’t a perfect solution. Regardless of where you put it, there are going to be pros and cons. For every single site, we are weighing these out. We decided this was the best place to put it.”

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