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Mooresville approves land zoning

Hopper Communities plans to build a single-family subdivision on 182 acres zoned R-2 on Monday by the Mooresville Board of Commissioners. Map courtesy town of Mooresville

Hopper Communities plans to build a single-family subdivision on 182 acres zoned R-2 on Monday by the Mooresville Board of Commissioners. Map courtesy town of Mooresville

The Mooresville Board of Commissioners on Monday unanimously approved establishing the zoning for a 182-acre property on Statesville Highway that Hopper Communities plans to develop into a subdivision.

Bart Hopper, the company’s founder, said he didn’t have specifics on the project other than that there would be about two units per acre, and no plans have yet been submitted to the town.

The land is in Iredell County, but zoning jurisdiction was released to Mooresville in October. Mooresville Senior Planner Craig Culberson said that the property will not be annexed by Mooresville until June 2015, but that giving the town jurisdiction over the site allows the subdivision’s planning process to move forward.

The board zoned the property R-2, a low-density single-family residential zoning, which allows detached and attached residential housing, as well as small-scale institutional development, such as churches, post offices and police sub-stations. R-2 zoning also permits accessories, such as golf courses and bed and breakfast inns, according to the town’s zoning ordinance.

Mooresville’s planning staff recommended to the board that the property’s zoning resemble the county’s previous zoning,which was residential agricultural. Mooresville does not have a residential agricultural zoning code.

The board held a public hearing on the zoning before voting.

Those who spoke against the zoning during the public hearing were worried that the assigned zoning gave developers too much freedom.

“When you read (the zoning code), it sounds low density, but there’s not a minimum requirement of lot sizes, so I don’t know what R-2 is,” said Brad Griggs, who lives near Hopper’s property.

The maximum density for R-2 zoning is two units per acre, according to Culberson. He said that’s what the “2” in “R-2” stands for.

Residents were also concerned that the development would increase traffic and cause overcrowding in schools.

Culberson said on Tuesday that Hopper will be required to complete a traffic report as part of the development plan’s approval process.

The board agreed to provide water and sewer utilities to the site in August.

The board also approved the establishment of a second zoning for a property on Saddle Road south of downtown that was also removed from Iredell County’s jurisdiction in October.

Although the county’s Planning Board had proposed that the land be zoned R-2, the owner of the 9-acre property, TAC Stafford LLC, requested the board zone the property R-3 in order to keep consistent zoning across its planned 200-acre development, which is adjacent to the property.

R-3 zoning is intended for primarily low-density detached residential housing at a maximum density of three units per acre, and allows institutional development structures at a maximum size of 25,000 square feet per building.

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