HOUSTON -

Opening statements began Wednesday in a case to stop a controversial high-rise from going up near Rice Village.

Protests and petitions over the Ashby high-rise have been in the works for years.

A group of about 30 residents in the neighborhood is suing to stop development on the 21-story residential tower on Bissonnet.

The group says the project would infringe on privacy, create traffic issues and hinder safety on surrounding streets.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs told the jury that during the trial they would hear about foundation damage to nearby homes and how the project would impact property values.

But attorneys for the developers told the jury they will hear that the development has been fully approved, their clients have followed all of the rules, and that similar buildings are common in Houston where there is no zoning. The developers say the high-rise is a reasonable project in the area.

The trial is expected to last three weeks.