2009-03-07 / News

More senior housing planned

By Charles Prince

HEBRON - Board of Planning and Zoning members unanimously agreed Monday night to recommend that Hebron Village Council rezone a 7.65 acre tract from Manufacturing (M-1) to Residential Multi-Family (R- 5).

If village council members agree, the new zoning will allow L. W. Associates, Inc. of Ashville to add 40 units to its Crossroads Manor development. The property is currently owned by the Voldness family. The new units would be consstructed to the east of the current development. Each apartment would have 980 sq. ft. with two bedrooms and an attached garage.

It's tax credit housing for seniors, John LeVally, acquisitions manager for L.W. Associates, told board members. It's for seniors who have too much income to qualify for HUDsubsidized housing, but can't afford a $150,000 condo. "We think there is a strong need in the area," he said.

LeVally said a new road off North High Street will provide primary access. The developer is obtaining rights to cross the railroad to get into the property. After hearing LeVally's initial presentation at their Feb. 2 meeting, board members scheduled a public hearing for Monday night.

An adjoining property owner asked several questions about the development during the hearing. She praised the design and was pleased when LeVally assured her that it would not be HUDsubsidized housing. Community development coordinator Andie Myers added that she hadn't received any comments about the request.

Board members had up to 35 days after the hearing to make a recommendation to council, but elected to do so Monday night. Village council members will hold a public hearing before making a final decision on the rezoning request.

In other business Monday night, members will recommend that council members turn down a request from Foster Raymond, LLC to rezone a small tract at 106 North Street from General Commercial (GC) to Manufacturing (M-1). The property is in front of the existing storage units on the west side of North High Street. Now storage units can only be built in M-1 areas, hence the request for the change. The application prompted discussion last month and again Monday night about possibly amending the zoning ordinance to allow storage buildings as a conditional use in a General Commercial area, rather than strictly limiting them to Manufacturing areas. Member Bill Wright expressed a desire to find another way for the applicant to build storage units there without the board having to resort to spot zoning.

"There are no other options under this manual," Mayor Clifford Mason said. He then moved to recommend that council approve the change. His motion died for a lack of a second.

Member Rick Orr then moved to recommend that council turn down the request. Wright seconded it and it was approved 4-1 with Mason dissenting.

A variance request from John and Cathy McCoy to build a new garage five feet from the side property line at 134 Hamilton was unanimously approved. Zoning regulations require a 13 foot side lot setback. The garage's placement is consistent with the homes at 132 and 136 Hamilton, Orr said. No one objected to the variance during the earlier public hearing.

At the February organizational meeting, Charlie Kline was elected chair, Orr as vice chair and Wright as secretary. The board continues to meet at 6:30 p.m. on the first Monday of the month in council chambers. Board members scheduled a work session to review the final touches to the revised zoning manual before it is submitted to council for approval. The work session will follow next month's regular meeting which begins at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, April 6.

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