After denying a rezoning request in July that would have allowed a small subdivision along I-495, the Town Council decided at its meeting Monday, Aug. 1, to give the development a second chance.
The council voted unanimously to grant a rehearing on the rezoning on Whitley Ridge, which would go north of I-495 east of the Carriage Manor neighborhood, after the developer, Eastwind Development, made some changes to its original application.
The vote starts the rezoning process over for the project.
Eastwind said that after the original 4-1 denial on July 5, the N.C. Division of Environmental Quality informed the developer that a stream did not extend as far onto the property as originally thought, opening up a potential additional lot and providing more flexibility for neighborhood amenities. The project would now include a playground, a community meeting space, board fencing accents at the entrance, decorative lantern-style streetlights and park benches.
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Attorney Andy Petesch, representing Eastwind, said the development team met with town senior planner Jason Brown shortly after its request was denied. “(We) came up with some improvements that addressed several items that the staff identified and the council identified in their vote on July 5 as inconsistent with the Comprehensive Plan, and so I hope we were able to tip the scales overall to consistency,” Petesch said.
The development would have 27 lots now, instead of 26, with each lot being an acre.
The roughly 27-acre parcel was orphaned around the turn of the century from Amber Ridge subdivision by realignment of I-495, breaking off the pie-wedge-shaped parcel from Amber Ridge after grading had already begun.
The Land Use Review Board had voted unanimously in favor of the original rezoning request in July, citing the lower-than-allowed density of lots, but town staff had recommended against approval, citing inconsistencies with the Comprehensive Plan in promoting “sense of place,” preserving the local character of the town and promoting a mix of uses that reflect and build on the town’s character.
“I see where you made a lot of changes,” said Mayor Pro-Tem Mike Chalk, who cast the lone vote in favor of the rezoning July 5.
Matt Goad: 919-829-4826