Residents in St. Albert are trying to keep a nearby green space from getting re-zoned for an affordable housing project.

"We would like to see it appended to a park," said David Evans, whose property backs up onto the proposed area near 70 Arlington Drive.

Evans, along with other residents have formed a petition to keep the project away.

"I am not totally against developing it, I am just not really in favour of a high density development and I would really prefer it stayed a park," said resident Pat Heidelberg.

The green space is currently owned by St. Albert Protestant Schools, but it says a school isn't needed it wants to sell the land.

Habitat for Humanity says it has already agreed to buy the land for $840,000, and has already put 10 per cent of the amount down.

"We are convinced that it is the right thing for St. Albert," said Alfred Nikolai, president of Habitat for Humanity Edmonton.

But despite the opposition, the Mayor of St. Albert likes the idea. Habitat for Humanity would build 15 of the complex's units, and would have a 20 per cent stake in another 43 units, which would be built by Apollo Developments.

"There is no model out there that is better from an affordable housing standpoint that we can see right now because people are paying their mortgage payment, they own their homes," said St. Albert's Mayor Nolan Crouse.

Resident are hoping to have their say at a public hearing in mid-March before city council makes a decision later in the year.

The City of St. Albert would still have to re-zone the proposed land for housing before a sale could go through.

With files from Sonia Sunger