Legal experts are reaching out to tenants of the Regency of Columbia Mobile Home Park who could be affected by the possible rezoning and shutdown of the trailer court. KBIA’s Ryan Schmidt spoke with organizations and tenants about how they are coming to terms with this potential setback.
By Ryan Schmidt (Columbia, Mo.)
Nina Hyde has lived in the Regency Mobile Home Park for more than 35 years. She says when she first moved into the trailer court, people could not park double in the streets, the trees were trimmed, and the court was in excellent condition. But now…
“We’ve got potholes, dead trees, trees dying, people run up and down the streets, people playing their music,” said Hyde. “You name it- dope addicts, you name it. It’s went down to pot.”
That’s where Mid-Missouri Legal Services housing attorney Michael Carney comes in. His office focuses on teaching people about their legal rights as tenants and providing them free legal advice, if they qualify financially for the services. City council member Barbara Hoppe represents the sixth ward, which includes the mobile home park, and she says organizations like Legal Services can help people who are in this kind of situation.
“Last time we had a rezoning with a mobile home park, I was able to get a little more time for them to move, and the last three months abated of rent, so I’ll try to do that this time,” said Hoppe.
As for Nina Hyde, she says Legal Services and other firms can only do so much to help lower-income tenants like herself. The Planning and Zoning Commission is considering Regency of Columbia’s request to rezone the park as commercial land. Regency has plans to sell the property to another company, which would build student housing on the site. Columbia’s Planning and Zoning meeting takes place Thursday night at City Hall.