An Alexandria circuit court judge ruled last week that a halfway home for emotionally disturbed persons can be built in a residential area in western Alexandria although hundreds of the area's residents don't want it.

Judge Donald H. Kent ruled that the city board of zoning appeals acted reasonably, when it gave permission for the halfway home to be built in an area zoned for single-family residences. Kent also ruled that the appeals board decision does not violate city ordinances.

Residents opposed to the halfway house planned for 5325 Polk Ave. opposed the board the board ruling last November and filed an appeal to the circuit court.

Proposals of the home say it will be a transitional living facility for as many as seven Alexandrians who have a history of acute psychological or emotional problems. The residents of the home will be like a family, all pitching into cook meals and do other chores, and thus should be eligible to reside in an area zoned for single families, attorneys for the home argued.

But the opponents unsuccessfully argued that the half-way house will be more like a boarding house with no permanence or stability among the residents.