The County Commission on Wednesday voted 7-2 against approval of a Planned Unit Development for up to 37 single-family homes on 20 acres along Taft Highway.
The commission earlier in the meeting approved R-1 status for the property, which has several streams as well as some slopes.
Chairman Chip Baker said his main concern was that the homes would have to be on septic tanks. He said he would have approved had a sewer line been available at the site near Fairmount Road and by the town of Walden.
He said he had heard from around 50 people opposed and one in favor.
Mike Price, representing the developer, said 37 was the maximum number of lots. He said the Health Department might decide that it should be fewer.
He said each of the septic tanks would have a backup system in case the first one failed.
Mr. Price said about 20 percent of the site would be undeveloped.
Attorney Kirby Yost, representing neighbors in opposition, said the PUD was used in order "to cut lot sizes in half."
She said nearby neighbors were mainly on 2-5-acre sites.
Ms. Yost said the set-aside land included a detention pond and another site separated by streams.
Voting in favor of the PUD were Commissioners Warren Mackey and Greg Martin.