Zoning concerns, subdivision development addressed by Planning Commission

Published 8:56 pm Thursday, November 2, 2017

With a busy calendar year almost at an end, the Elizabethton Planning and Development Office is already eyeing for the future.
Zoning concerns were brought up during Thursday’s Regional Planning Commission meeting when discussing the rezoning of property owned by Bill Taylor.
Taylor, a commissioner, abstained from the vote but was able to field questions about the rezoning, which passed, meaning his property on West G Street will now be moved to B-2 business.
It was comments made by Commissioners Dena Bass and Melanie Sellars that revisited the rezoning concerns and the way properties are zoned now in the city, including G Street.
Jon Hartman, Elizabethton Planning and Development director, noted he saw concerns and that the issue will be tackled at the start of the new calendar year. The City has been working to wrap up the Major Road & Thoroughfare Plan, expected to be finished by next month.
Hartman added that laws have not been changed since around the 1970s and that due to limited staff and funds, the issue has been delayed with other projects being addressed, but that wording and zoning will be updated with the plan.
A new development for Mary Patton Highway is also inching its way closer to fruition.
Commissioners approved a preliminary plat for West Ridge subdivision Thursday to OK infrastructure and road for the new subdivision.
The approval is a step forward as developers will look to achieve a final plat approval in the coming weeks. Having the preliminary plan allows Richard Hale, with Three Arrows, LLC, and Highlands Engineering to begin coordinating with the Tennessee Department of Transportation to get action underway at the new site.
The previous plan in effect was for a road to connect with Gap Creek Road, but the new plan changed with a new road ending with a cul-de-sac near Gap Creek.
Following October’s meeting, Hale added that property would be “retained” to extend the road from the cul-de-sac to Gap Creek if needed for the future.
Commissioners praised the efforts of Hale, an Elizabethton native, and commended the idea having a subdivision development in the community.
Homes in the community will be priced between $190,000 to $250,000 and be built on lots between a quarter acre to half an acre. Jonathan Lewis, with the engineering firm, stated there would be around 17 lots.
Concerns were also raised prior to the vote when a memorandum was provided with a list of requirements Hale would need to meet and that there wasn’t time for commissioners to study them, with Sellers adding commissioners received the memo just 10 minutes before the meeting.
Hartman issued an apology for the staff’s late notice, adding that he met with Hale and that “no surprises” were on the list. Hale spoke up during the meeting and reiterated the stance.
In other business, the Planning Commission OK’ed the request of annexation for 1101 Charity Hill Road and approved a site plan for a new building within the Watauga Industrial Park on Judge Don Lewis Road.

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