BRISTOL, Tenn. (WJHL) — Dozens of new homes are coming to a Bristol, Tennessee subdivision, but some of its current residents are frustrated with its zoning.

Bristol, Tennessee City Council unanimously approved the re-zoning of two parcels of land adjacent to the Fox Meadows neighborhood in South Bristol.

Ardent Property Group owns the land. Developer Jerome Maliney said he wants to build 176 single-family homes across 45 acres of land.

The re-zoning changes the land from R-2 (single-family residential and duplex) to a residential planning district, which allows for single-family, dual-family and multi-family residential structures.

A 22-acre parcel was also annexed from Sullivan County into Bristol, Tennessee.

But several Fox Meadows residents voiced their opposition to the re-zoning at Tuesday’s meeting. They said the re-zoning opens the door for multi-family buildings they do not want in their neighborhood.

“We have to trust you guys and this developer that he’s going to do what he says, but he can change and do whatever he wants at any time,” resident Josh Sadler told the council during public comment.

Some residents said they supported the expansion, but not the re-zoning.

Many homes in the neighborhood had signs in opposition to the re-zoning and annexation in the front yards.

Maliney said the expansion is specifically for 176 single-family homes.

He said the homebuilder required the residential planning district zoning in their contract. Without it, Maliney said the builders would pull out of the project.

Bristol City Council members were adamant the re-zoning needed to happen to bring new housing development to the city.

Councilmember Lea Powers said the development was key to supporting Bristol’s population growth, despite concerns with the zoning change.

“We have to trust it at some point to be able to move the community forward,” Powers said. “We have worked for many years trying to set this community up to have residential developers to come in and be interested, and everything, whether we want to admit it or not, is tied to population growth.”

But residents demanded the zoning stay the same. They said Ardent could still build the homes they wanted with R-2 zoning, which would prevent any possibility of multi-family homes coming to Fox Meadows.

“I don’t understand why the zone even includes it. Mr. Malinay doesn’t want to build multi-family homes. We don’t want them. So, I don’t know why there’s a zone proposed that even includes it. Why is there not an option for something different?”

Several residents expressed concerns about traffic.

The neighborhood has only one entrance currently. The expansion adds a second entrance, but residents were concerned about traffic congestion on Beaver Creek Road and safety with many families and children in the area.

Maliney said construction could begin as soon as July and would take about three years to complete.

Developers still need the approval of the subdivision plat from the Bristol Regional Planning Commission.

City Council will have a second reading of the re-zoning and annexation at their July meeting.