Midtown residents raise concerns at Turner Dairy meeting

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Tuesday evening you couldn't find an empty seat as many people wanted their voices to be heard about a dairy plant expansion in the middle of Overton Square.

"A growing industrial capacity is not compatible with a vibrant residential neighborhood -- one or the other wins out," said Sam Goff, president of the Midtown Memphis Development Corp.

The majority seemed upset about Turner Dairy wanting to turn three acres in the back into an industrial zone and then build a $10 million, 17,000 square foot warehouse.

"Everything I've heard and understand, it's just not a win for our neighborhood. What we are trying to do in this neighborhood is make it more livable and accessible."

Some neighbors said the expansion will hurt their property value and create even more noise, claiming more semi-trucks would roll into the 24/7 manufacturing plant.

"We have had a lot of people complain about noise, lights and smells for years," said Sarah Goff.

Not all agreed. Some employees and neighbors even fired back.

"That place been there for 80 years, you shouldn't have moved there."

"Yes, we have noise, we have industrial but Memphis also has airplanes flying over at 2 a.m. and bars open at 3 a.m."

An attorney for Turner Dairy wasn't at the meeting, but sent us a statement saying, "Our plan offers a significant upgrade to landscaping and streetscaping, and was developed with and is supported by many of the dairy's neighbors."

The council will decide whether to rezone that lot from commercial to industrial.