Huntersville Approves Changes to Residential Design Standards

The Huntersville Board of Commissioners last night voted 5-1 to approve a series of changes to the Town’s residential aesthetic requirements, bringing the zoning code toward full compliance with state law.

The Board approved a modified proposal agreed upon by REBIC and Town planners that eliminates a garage setback mandate and further reduces requirements for the construction of alleys in single-family neighborhoods. Dan Boone, the one dissenting commissioner, argued that the changes would negatively impact the town’s community aesthetics, and expressed disappointment with the law passed last year by the General Assembly.

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Huntersville Planning Commission Rejects Compromise Language on Residential Aesthetic Changes

The Huntersville Planning Commission last night voted unanimously to recommend approval of an ordinance to amend the Town’s residential aesthetic requirements, but in a manner that REBIC believes is insufficient to comply with a new state law.

In making its recommendation, the commission rejected an alternative proposal agreed upon by REBIC and Town planners than would have further reduced requirements for the construction of alleys in single-family neighborhoods. Commissioners argued that town’s aesthetic appeal would be negatively impacted by the allowance of front-entry garages on lots 50′ or wider, effectively challenging the General Assembly to take further action to limit their authority. Continue reading

Huntersville Begins Work on Area Plan for Upper Ramah Creek Basin

RamahCreekAreaPlanMap

Last Thursday evening the Town of Huntersville planning staff held a meeting for the purpose of obtaining public comments prior to the adoption of the Upper Ramah Creek Basin Small Area Plan.  During the briefing, staff provided an overview of current and future happenings in the study area including:

  • North Ramah Creek sewer extension from existing location to NC-73 will begin in the spring of 2014 and should be completed by the spring of 2016.
  • Description of location of future transit station (Red Line) NC-115 and NC-73.
  • Summary of the NC-73 Land Use Corridor Plan (I-85 to Lincoln County).

Staff also briefed the group on some of the comments they had already received from community residents regarding the study area.  According to staff, most felt that:

  • Any land east of the Willowbrook subdivision should continue to be low intensity development.
  • Any land west of the Willowbrook subdivision should be higher intensity commercial and residential development.
  • Any land near the future transit station should be light industrial or transit oriented development.

The next meeting will be held on March 13th at 6:00 p.m. at Huntersville Town Hall.  At that meeting, staff will give an updated summary of comments received.   Another opportunity to provide additional input will also be provided.  Staff hopes to present a final plan presentation to the Town Board at its regularly scheduled meeting on July 21st at 6:30 pm.  If you have any questions or concerns about this matter, please do not hesitate to contact Rob Nanfelt with REBIC.

You can download the information presented at the meeting at the links below:

Huntersville Approves Changes to Bonding Policy

The Huntersville Board of Commissioners this week approved a change to its Bonding program, and will now allow developers to request acceptance of completed streets as early as 60% build-out by posting a two-year Maintenance Bond. Previously, the Town would not accept new streets until a project reached 75% density. Under the new policy, developers can now choose whichever option is more economical for them.

REBIC supported the proposal, but believes additional policy changes are needed to make the town’s bonding requirements more conducive to economic development. We will continue to encourage the commissioners to make further amendments to allow earlier acceptance of road improvements, and to enforce the installation of street trees through the CO process instead of through a bond. Read our letter to Mayor Jill Swain and the Town Board HERE. The ordinance changes are listed on the fourth and fifth pages of the Board agenda, HERE.