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Shopping center rezoning recommended in Lincoln Co.

The Lincoln County Planning Board voted Monday 8-0 to recommend that the Board of Commissioners approve Cambridge Properties Inc.’s petition to rezone 15 acres east of N.C. Highway 16 for a grocery-anchored shopping center. The board is expected to vote at its May 16 meeting.

The property is slightly north of N.C. Highway 73 and west of Pilot Knob Road in southeastern Lincoln County. It currently features a single-family home and is largely vacant.

Dubbed Cambridge Village, plans call for up to 90,000 square feet of commercial space, including a 50,000-square-foot grocery store, and 12,000 square feet of retail. The remainder of space might accommodate a restaurant and bank branch. The grocer, which hasn’t yet been announced, is expected to be Publix.

The county’s planning staff recommended approval of the petition, saying the proposed project is in an area that is largely commercial and that the proposed project would attract businesses, create jobs, and increase the county’s tax base.

Neighbors have expressed concerns about increased traffic. In its consistency statement, the board said that the creation of a “road grid with internal connections, access to N.C. 16 Business, N.C. 73, and North Pilot Knob Road, and connections to adjoining tracts of land” will help disperse traffic and anticipate future traffic growth.

“A traffic impact analysis was conducted and it recommended a number of improvements which the developer has agreed to make,” said Randy Hawkins, county zoning administrator.

The developer said at an April community meeting on the project that it hoped to begin construction in the first quarter.

Cambridge Properties sought a rezoning to planned development commercial from transitional residential and general business.

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