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Back You are here: Home News Local and State News Local Carolina Beach Council Approves Permitting Breweries In Town

Carolina Beach Council Approves Permitting Breweries In Town

Click image for larger view: The Carolina Beach Town Council approved a request opening the door for a new Brewery at 811 Harper Avenue just off Dow Road at their February 11th meeting.

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CAROLINA BEACH - The Carolina Beach Town Council approved a zoning amendment  to permit Breweries in certain areas of Town at their February 11th, meeting.
According to Zoning Administrator Jeremy Hardison, the applicant, Richard Jones, approached staff about opening a brewery in Town.
Hardison explained, "Breweries could be allowed under manufacturing, but the applicant would like to be able to serve alcohol on site. Currently establishments that serve alcohol on site are approved either as a Standard Restaurant or as a Bar. The brewery is not proposing to serve food and the applicant stated that they would not be operating as a bar. The applicant decided to amend the ordinance to address breweries that desired to serve alcohol. The proposal is for breweries to be permitted by right in the I-1 zoning district. Currently bars are allowed as a conditional use and manufacturing is allowed by right in the I-1 zoning district."
Jones is part owner of Good Hops Brewing LLC, with an address on the application of 811 Harper Avenue in Carolina Beach at the corner of Harper and Dow Road.
Hardison explained, "Many NC communities have amended their ordinance to allow for the increase emergence of smaller breweries to service local needs. The on-site consumption of the product being brewed is a common accessory activity that occurs. The State ABC regulation allows an establishment that has received a license as a brewery to sell its product for consumption on its premises. Allowances for breweries under state guidelines can be found under NCGS18b."
He explained, "Tap rooms that are associated with breweries should be an accessory use. Staff recommends requiring a Condition Use Permit if the area for on-site consumption and entertainment exceeds a certain size. Technical Review Committee (TRC) also discussed to authorize the use in the Highway Business (HB) district and Central Business District (CBD) zoning districts. To prevent a large manufacture in these districts staff recommends limiting the sq. ft. of the building to 6,000 sq. ft. The maximum of 6,000 sq. ft. was chosen based off of the allowable lot coverage in the HB zoning district of 60% on a minimum lot size of 10,000 sq. ft. Limiting the scale of manufactures in the HB and CBD would protect the character of the area and be in keeping of the desired future uses."
The Planning and Zoning Commissioner unanimously recommended at their January meeting the Council approve of the requested amendment.
Hardison explained, "Staff recommends allowing and clearly defining brewery establishments in Carolina Beach. It furthers the goals of the 2007 Land Use Plan and is consistent that the Town will encourage new and expanding businesses that provide goods, services, and entertainment to year round residents and visitors. It promotes economic development and redevelopment projects that support a resort-market niche."
Council member Sarah Friede said, "I've gotten only positive feedback on this. I think it’s a really interesting use for the Glove Factory that really hasn't got a lot of use. I have wondered many times over the years what could possibly go in there that wouldn't disrupt the neighborhood. I think this is probably one of the best possible uses. There is no smell, no noise. They are going to have limited hours. I think unless I hear screaming from neighbors who think otherwise, I'm really inclined to vote for it."
Mayor Dan Wilcox said, "I agree. I think this is a unique opportunity for Carolina Beach to have something that probably very few 6,000 populated towns would have especially a coastal community like this. I think it’s a nice addition to what we have and to claim that Carolina Beach has its own brewery so to speak is a good thing."
Council member Leann Pierce agreed.
Patricia Jones told the Council they plan to begin operations April 17th.
Councilman Gary Doetsch said, "The only thing I've got on this is going back to the central business district and maybe we can strike that from the permitted areas of use for a brewery. I understand a brew pub may be entirely different. This being just a manufacturing facility and a taste testing place, I would be more comfortable doing away with the allowance in the central business district."
The Council voted unanimously to approve of the request excluding permitting breweries in the downtown Central Business District.
Councilman Steve Shuttleworth said, "I just think this is the most new and exciting and refreshing economic development we've seen in a while."
In the application Jones wrote, "Good Hops Brewing Company LLC will be fully funded and owned by the two families who will be residents of Carolina Beach."
On their website at a description states, "New on the beer scene and immediately captivated, we set out to join the best industry we have ever witnessed in our half century of existence. Actually it wasn’t that easy. Our son, Lookout Brewing Company persuaded us to help him start his brewery and it was truly a love of labor (even with the 80 hour work weeks). With a fistful of excellent tasting beers we set out to spread our love of fresh beer with others both new and imbued to the craft beer trade. Our goal to be one of the first breweries to expand from the mountains of North Carolina to the coast of Carolina Beach and keep the business in the family. Good Hops Brewing will focus on Ales. As in medieval time when ale and bread were served with every meal to provide an important source of nutrition and hydration without intoxication, we offer session beer. Ales are slightly sweeter less bitter beer and session beers offer the opportunity to sample all our beer varieties. We strive to transform all new craft beer seekers into believers of how beer can dare to be different and still remain pleasing in taste."
A list of their brews includes beers such as the Boardwalk Brown Ale described as, "Our brown ale is a very old style beer, whose history dates back to the 18th century when brown ales were earthy, lightly hopped and less bitter brewed with a higher level of malt. Contributions of dark and sweet malts mingle with English style hops. ABV 5%"
Others include Bravehop Scotch Ale, Donna Golden Ale, Hoppertone Double IPA, Paradise Island Pilsner and many others. Jones application states that growth of the craft brewing industry in 2012 was 15% by volume and 17% by dollars compared to growth in 2011 of 13% by volume and 15% by dollars. Craft brewers sold an estimated 13,235,917 barrels of beer in 2012, up from 11,467,337 in 2011.
Patricia Jones of Good Hops Brewing, LLC said the difference between a bar and a brewery is that a bar applies only through the ABC Commission as a retail permit to onsite consumption. The brewery permit is permitted to manufacture malt beverages; Purchase malt, hops and other ingredients used in the manufacture of malt beverages; Sell, deliver and ship malt beverages; Receive malt beverages manufactured in other states; Furnish or sell marketable malt beverage products, or packages, to its employees and guests in this State; they can give its products to its employees and guests for consumption on its premises which is called tastings; and in areas where the sale is legal, sell the brewery’s malt beverages at the brewery upon receiving a permit."