By Angela Musallam

ROCKLIN (CBS13) — A group of Rocklin residents is up in arms over a new development they say will hurt their neighborhoods.

The city approved a new apartment complex to be built on the corner of Sierra College Boulevard and Rocklin Road back in December. Work has already started, but opponents say the project will bring more traffic and pollution to the area.

One local group has filed a lawsuit to get the city to reconsider.

“I’m devastated, I’m just devastated,” said Denise Gaddis, head of the El Don Neighborhood Advisory Committee.

Gaddis says she can’t believe the City of Rocklin is giving the green light for developers to turn a once heavily-wooded corner into a multi-story apartment complex.

Gaddis lives just on the other side.

“This is gonna be this giant cement eyesore,” Gaddis said.

The Sierra Gateway Apartments would have nearly two-hundred units and would stand three-stories high.

A former planning commissioner, Gaddis says the project doesn’t fit into the area and would add thousands of more cars to an already congested Sierra College Boulevard.

“We’re not some radicals saying no development, we’re saying responsible development,” Gaddis added.

Nearby neighbors are also frustrated the city allowed the developer to chop down more than three-hundred oak trees.

Locals say they’re a piece of history this part of Rocklin will never get back.

“This used to be a nice wooded piece of property, and they could have put half those units in the center of it and kept a more rural and a nicer setting,” said one concerned neighbor.

The project has been under fire by many city residents since its proposal in 2013.

Rocklin-based nonprofit Citizens Voice, filed a lawsuit with the city in January, one month after city council members unanimously voted to approve the project.

“Why do you have to put this large condensed footprint building/structure on a small piece of land?” questioned Chris Wiegman, president of the organization.

Wiegman is suing the city on behalf of his organization, saying it approved the project despite residents’ concerns.

“You need to stand behind your residents, your city council has to stand by its constituents, and they need to make these things right,” said Wiegman.

A city spokesman sent CBS13 a statement Tuesday, responding to the lawsuit, saying:

“The Sierra Gateway Project owners are within their rights to continue construction, unless otherwise ordered by a court to stop, which has not occurred.”

Members of Citizens Voice say they hope to come to an agreement with the city, to scale back the project.

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