Planning Commission To Consider Residential Rezoning Request For 25 Properties On Sumter Avenue

Planning Commission To Consider Residential Rezoning Request For 25 Properties On Sumter Avenue

Planning Commission To Consider Residential Rezoning Request For 25 Properties On Sumter Avenue Featured

By / Local News / Wednesday, 10 July 2019 22:43

Managing Editor

CAROLINA BEACH  - The Carolina Beach Planning and Zoning Commission will consider a request at their Thursday July 11th meeting to rezone 25 parcels on Sumter Avenue, South 6th Street and South 4th Street.

According to Town Planning Director Jeremy Hardison, the applicant, Karen Graybush, applied to rezone 25 properties on the south side of Sumter Ave from the 400 block to the Sunny Point buffer area from R-1 to R-3. The rezoning also includes 804 and 803 S. Sixth St. and 804 S. 4th St.

Hardison explained, "The town is divided into different zoning districts to regulate the height and size of buildings and to regulate the intensity of land usage, and the location of land uses. It is to provide for the improved environment; and to promote the health, safety and general welfare of its citizens. The reasoning for the applicants proposed rezoning is to prohibit duplexes from being built in this area. If changed the area would only allow single-family dwellings."

He explained, "The primary differences between the zoning districts is that R-1 has smaller minimum lot size (5,000 sq. ft.) and allows two-family dwellings (duplexes). The R-3 district minimum lot size is 12,000 sq. ft. and only allows single-family dwellings. The other differences besides density and lot size is that R-1 has a 20’ front setback verses R-3 with a 25’ front setback requirement, and this section of R-1 is in a 45’ height overlay district vs 40’ height limit for R-3."

Hardison explained, "The area that is proposed to be rezoned currently has 16 single-family dwellings, 7 vacant lots, and one two-family dwelling. A building permit has recently been applied for to build duplexes on three of the vacant lots. The 25 lots in this area are owned by 22 different property owners. Ten properties meet the R-3 minimum lot size of 12,000 sq. ft. These properties have the potential to be subdivided to meet the R-1 5,000 sq. ft. minimum lot size. Fifteen of the properties meet the R-1 minimum lots size and would be nonconforming if they were rezoned to R-3. Nonconforming lots can still be developed, but must meet the setbacks for the zoning district."

He explained the Town's Land Use Plan states the area should predominately include single family and duplex units and density in that area will be moderate with a minimum of 5,000 square foot lots with around 8.7 units per acre with up to 15 units per acre allowed.

Hardison explained, "Lot coverage will not be allowed to exceed 40%. New multi-family (3 units or more) residential development shall be prohibited."

Graybush explained in a letter to neighbors that was included in the rezoning application, "I am your neighbor and live at 518 Sumter Ave, Carolina Beach. I am also a Real Estate Broker with Intracoastal Realty, but I am not working in this capacity at this time. I am contacting you as a citizen of Carolina Beach and your neighbor only."

Graybush urged residents to attend meetings of the Town's Planning and Zoning Commission as well as Town Council, "To be heard on this topic or to show support."

She explained in the letter, "There are three lots for sale at 517 Sumter, 519 Sumter and 803 S. 6th Street. These lots are under contract to a developer who plans to build duplexes. There are not any duplexes on our street. Our street is a neighborhood of single family homes. Our street dead ends to Lark Park Boulevard at Third Street, and is quiet and private and full of mostly full time residents."

She explained, "Current zoning divides our street down the middle, Sumter Ave, down the middle, allowed duplexes from Fourth Street to Eight Street, on the South side of the street. I ran into the developer and builder this afternoon and had a chat with them. I request you all think upon the following as to possibly allowing the zoning to stay by changing "rules (covenants) that run with the land (meaning all who build must meet these rules as they are "attached to and run with" the land, regardless of who owns the land."

She explained, "The builder is local and thinking of building duplexes that look like those on Fourth Street between Sumter and Spartanburg on the west side of the street. (one has the garage in front of the home)."

Graybush explained, "Perhaps there can be some discourse during this process into not necessarily re-zoning, but in allowing duplexes that have covenants and/or HOA requirements that go with the development. Duplexes that look like homes, and have storage and/or garages, that allow for yards might be considered. Also, allowing owner occupied residents. There are builders that like to build with the interest of the Town and neighborhoods at the forefront of designs and plans, and then there are builders that do not."

She explained in the letter, "I am putting a zoning change request for all of the lots from Fourth to Eight on the south side (all of the odd numbered properties) I am proposing they move the zone line from the middle of Sumter Ave to the middle of the blocks between Sumter and Spartanburg, Spartanburg being a "drive through" street with heavier traffic. Or we can discuss the "covenants" idea. As we all know affordable housing on the island is at crisis."

In the letter, Graybush requested 38 property owners consider donating funds to help pay the $625 application to the Planning Department.

The Planning Commission will consider the request at their July 11th, meeting at 6:30PM at Town Hall, 1121 N. Lake Park Blvd. For more info call 910-458-2999.


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