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Request to change zoning next to a cemetery denied


STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAU) -- An unusual request to change the zoning of a Stevens Point property was denied. The survivors of Irene Haertel asked the city to change the zoning for 3500 Main Street from residential to B-4 Business.

Haertel had previously sold the land north of their home along Wilshire Boulevard to the Catholic Cemetery Association, which borders two of the four sides of the lot. Many believe Haertel had a verbal agreement to sell the house to the cemetery when she passed away, but it was not found written in any of her documents.

The family and their realtor would like the property zoned for business, which would make the lot more valuable. After hearing several residents speak against the change, Alderman Randal Stroik said he could not support the change without a specific development plan.  

During committee meetings last week, there was also discussion about possible access and traffic problems. Opponents at both meetings emphasised the cemetery should be kept as a quiet place that’s free of business noises.

The City Council denied the request to change the zoning.

Irene Haertel died last December at 101 years old. She and her husband George ran Haertel Monuments, which placed a majority of the grave markers in the cemetery next door to their home. That’s not where they are buried, though. George and Irene Haertel were laid to rest in Wisconsin Rapids.