Agendas and Minutes

November 14, 2000 

Board of Commissioners
Posted by The Town of Emerald Isle 11/14/2000

November 13, 2000 

Planning Board

TOWN OF EMERALD ISLE MINUTES OF THE

REGULAR MEETING OF THE PLANNING BOARD

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 2000

 

Co-chairman, Ceil Saunders, called the meeting to order at 7:00 P.M.. Chairman, Cary Harrison was out of town, as well as Frank Vance and Fil Almeida. Members attending Ceil Saunders, Ed Dowling, George McLaughlin, and David Schock. This did constitute a quorum. Also present: Town Manager, Pete Allen; Secretary, Carol Angus.

Approval of Minutes of Regular Meeting of October 16, 2000 – George McLaughlin made the motion to approve the minutes, as written, second by Ed Dowling with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

Report from Town Manager – Mr. Allen did not have any information from the Town Board since their regular meeting is scheduled for the following evening.

Report from Building Inspector – Ms. Angus advised that James Taylor, Building Inspector should be attending the December meeting. She advised that there were permits were up at:

10 Single family dwellings permitted valued over $2,500,000.00

OLD BUSINESS:

A. Sunset Harbor, Lot 2, Block 38, Final Plat – Mr. Ricky Farrington and Mr. Bill Farrington were present to represent this project. Ms. Saunders advised that the only change or addition to be made to this plat from the Review Committee was to add the length of the concrete walkway to Bogue Sound Drive. Ms. Angus indicated to the members that this addition has been made to the plat at a distance of 72.74’. There were no further questions regarding this project.

Motion to recommend approval to the Town Board of Commissioners of Sunset Harbor, Lot 2, was made by George McLaughlin with second by Ed Dowling with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

B. Osprey Bluff S/D – Chairman Saunders asked that this item be moved down on the agenda in order to accommodate those persons making presentations regarding the traffic studies done by Benchmark, Inc., and Kemly-Horne, Inc.

Ed Dowling made the motion to move the presentations to be done to be moved up on the agenda and hear the Osprey Bluff following the presentations. Second by George McLaughlin with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

 

Mr. Andy Owens with Kimley-Horn, Inc. – gave an extensive presentation on the plan that the firm had developed for the Town. Kimley-Horn has been looking at the Coast Guard Road – Emerald Drive intersection for several months. They began with a traffic impact analysis of the signal itself. The conclusion was, that even with the high-density development, that the signal itself, with some minor improvements, could function adequately. Then the concern was turned to Coast Guard Road to see if it was able to handle the traffic as it exists or with possible improvments.

There was a map displayed that indicated a southbound lane (right lane) off Hwy 58 that ran south to exit onto Coast Guard Road lining up at approximately the entrance to Pebble Beach. (This would eliminate the existing Reed Dr. Ext ) Mr. Owens felt that the NC DOT might be agreeable to allowing this exit off of Hwy 58, especially if the town were to also write to make this request. He has had some exceptions made to access availability, even if additional access had previously been denied.

Mr. Owens felt that one access, or even two, on one road is going to handle the amount of traffic in the distance that is available. That was the reason they had proposed to split the traffic between two points. The proposed plan does split the property and it may not be the best situation for the developer, they may want the roadway shifted. This will reduce left turns into a road that has no signal. The plan proposed would reduce left turn volume by 40%.

The proposal shows widening of Coast Guard Rd to maximize the right-of-way, to allow for continuous left turn lanes in both directions and extending the existing left turn lane already in place to the campground.

Mr. Owens then made some additional comments regarding the proposal. One of the major items was to consider the Trav-L-Park to move their registration to the south side of Reed Drive during the heaviest tourist season to allow the long vehicles to make their left turn directly into the park to register. Three vehicles backed up can possibly be 180’.

Mr. Schock was concerned about the feasibility of D.O.T. allowing another turn lane off of Hwy. 58. Mr. Owens said he felt that there is a good case for this particular request.

Ms. Saunders said her concern is the beach traffic in the summer that is exiting the island on just the one lane, that could be a mess. Mr. Owens said that may be a problem, but it won’t be corrected by this study, they only concentrated on the Coast Guard Road side of Hwy 58.

There was some clarification given to the breakdown of the acreage of the commercial tract being considered. The entire tract is 7.3 acres. There was a misconception that the southern portion of the property was 7.3 acres in addition to the portion north of Reed Drive Ext.

Mr. Dowling was concerned about the power poles in the area. Mr. Owens said there is one large pole that may be a factor, or it may not be. Right now they don’t know. Mr. Dowling also had a question on the right-of-way of Hwy 58. Mr. Pete Allen explained to him about the 200’ right-of-way. Mr. Dowling then asked about the concern for pedestrian access as well as bicycle and jogging paths by Ms. Dorothy Marks. Mr. Owens said if had been discussed briefly, however, not pursued. A hashed crosswalk at the campground and at Pebble Beach. Mr. Owens said he thought there would be enough room to maintain the jogging/bicycle paths.

Ms. Marks addressed the safety issue of people, especially young people, being in the area of the blind curve. With pedestrians and a car turning left into Pebble Beach is a potential for an accident. Mr. Owens said that could be helped by the dedicated left turn lane into Pebble Beach. The blind curve could be cut back through development.

Ms. Marks asked with the traffic study was done and for how long a period of time? Mr. Owens said he did it himself on Labor Day Monday from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. They felt that should be a peak period and he saw a tremendous amount of trailers checking out. The back-ground data was also used from D.O.T.

Commissioner Trainham was concerned about a 12’ median being shown on his map; this has since been changed to 4’. It can be anywhere from 4’ to 12’ feet, the rendering is only a suggestion and can be readily changed to fit the roadway.

Mr. Owens said that he did not think maintaining the Reed Dr. Ext would be a good idea. If it is maintained, to make it a right turn in and right turn out situation to avoid congestion.

Commissioner Farmer asked if the location of the wetlands can be determined by the rendering Mr. Owens has? The response was that wetlands cannot be determined at this time. She asked what one or two access points be able to handle? Mr. Owens replied one access is not sufficient to handle B-3 zoning, worst case scenario which would be a 70,000 sq. ft. super market and 10,000 sq. ft. of additional retail or fast food or bank. He did not think a 20,000 sq. ft. super market would be a problem.

Mr. William Reist, resident, asked what discussion may have been given to the northern portion of Hwy 58. There is a large piece of property there with B-3 zoning. Mr. Owens said he did not consider that, they were not asked for any portion north of the highway. He said he could look into that and make some suggestions; but had little knowledge of the area right now.

Commissioner Wootten asked he understood that the widening of Coast Guard Road was contained within the 60’ right-of-way? He felt that the right-of-way would have to be 80’. This would help the joggers and bikers.

Mr. Gus Farmakidis, resident, asked if any consideration was given to rezoning the property to residential? It’s obvious that when he tries to leave the island traffic will be bad, and now it will be worse because some "clown" wants to build there. Mr. Owens said they did traffic count and signal function, but no consideration was given to that question. He is not in a position to tell someone how to develop their property.

Mr. Michael Harvey, with Benchmark, Inc. then addressed the Planning Board. He focused initially on Land Use Options. They do agree with Kimley-Horn in a lot of issues. The first idea was to rezone the property to a lower density. It makes the most sense; however, it would put the town in an adversarial relationship with the owner. It is their property zoned B-3 a long time. The second suggestion, to develop an internal migration pattern for the property for vehicular and pedestrian traffic. Then to amend the ordinance to put the developer on notice to solve this problem and be a part of the process. There are a number suggestions they have made, some being travel aisle widths, joint exits, one unified entrance, and the major ingress/egress point should be opposite the entrance to Pebble Beach.

Mr. Harvey also suggested that DOT put a light at that intersection. He felt it approvable.

Benchmark felt Reed Drive should be developed to allow only ingress and right turn OUT, no left turn. Some internal traffic pattern be generated to direct traffic into the proposed new road (across from Pebble Beach). Mr. Harvey said some of their ultimate suggestions mirror Kimley-Horn, Inc. He said he had been told that there would be no possibility of an entrance or exit would be possible off Hwy 58, so it was not looked at. Benchmark looked at what the town now has and can do with Reed Drive.

Benchmark advocates that Reed Dr. be a one-way entrance only access. This will allow access to the three proposed lots on Hwy 58 and will act as an internal mitigation driveway to the entire acreage. Then direct traffic around a 70,000 sq. ft. retail development (worst scenario) for emergency vehicles and tractor trailer trucks. Exit to be at same area as Pebble Beach for left and right lanes. Also to develop Coast Guard Road to have three traffic lanes; two lanes as existing and one holding lane. (Mr. Harvey then referred to Kimley-Horn map for some time pointing to the mentioned map, as he proceeded.) Mr. Harvey did agree that pedestrian and cycle traffic is a concern and should be addressed due to the congestion.

Mr. Harvey recommended that the town adopt an ordinance to require certain "traffic standards" by which roadways are approved, what type of materials, etc. in hand with the traffic pattern.

Barring rezoning the best bet is to extend Reed Drive to enter only and exit opposite Pebble Beach and to petition DOT to put a light at the intersection to exit. Sidewalks also should be installed.

He felt the Kimley-Horn idea of an access off Hwy 58 is a wonderful idea, if it can be approved.

Mr. Harvey gave the audience a few scenarios of what might be developed and density that could be proposed.

Commissioner Farmer asked if it is a viable option to rezone this property? Mr Harvey, replied it is, but there is a caveat to that. You can impose an overlay on anything you wish; however, you have to have an arguable and justifiable reason to rezone. Other than the wetlands, he does not know of any other condition that is germane to this property. Benchmark would be happy to give the town ideas on how to handle that. If a traffic circulation plan ordinance would be adopted it would apply to all B-3, not just the area of this property.

Commissioner Farmer asked if a condition could be considered for aesthetics as well as traffic?

Mr. Harvey replied that it could, as this is the town entrance and the board of commissioners and planning board could try to word it in such a way that they don’t want the entrance cluttered with "x", "y", "z". This method would take a long time in producing your result.

Mr. Farmakidis asked a question regarding the proposal previously submitted by Kimley-Horn which Mr. Harvey could not answer because the proposal before them was not a Benchmark plan. Mr. Harvey went on to advise that the Kimley-Horn option ought to be investigated.

Commissioner Wootten asked Mr. Harvey to explain a "limited use permit" phrase that was in the first submittal from Benchmark. Mr. Harvey said it would require certain uses to get limited permits, based on their compliance with the regulations, as well as exceeding the regulations.

An example would be if a developer went "beyond the call of duty" the limited use could be expanded.

Mr. Ed Dowling asked if Benchmark could supply the overlay district concept, and the commissioners asked for internal traffic circulation plan, rezoning traffic standard. Mr. Harvey replied that they could "easily". It would probably be available the next week.

Mr. Dowling said "This cost would be passed on to the developer, not the town?" But Mr. Harvey said "No, the cost would have to be absorbed by the town."

Commissioner Farmer asked whether rezoning could be considered spot zoning? Mr. Harvey said the sections surrounding this property is RMH, which would mean rezoning to RMH would make it contiguous to that zone. If the town attorney were to be comfortable with rezoning to a residential zone (R-2), he is the one who would have to defend it in court. Downzoning to B-1 would arguably not be upheld. However, the town attorney would have the last word, but there is no B-1 zoning contiguous to this property.

There was some discussion regarding the cost of such an extension of this project. At Mayor Harris’ request for the present costs, Mr. Allen said it has cost almost $15,000 so far for both reports. Ms. Harris is concerned about the taxpayer paying for these fees, and the developer is "home free". Mr. Harvey said Benchmark has charged approximately $4,500 to date.

Mr. Allen asked that Mr. Harvey contact him for an estimated cost of continuing this project.

Mayor Harris asked if the developer has contacted Benchmark, Inc. Mr. Harvey said they have not, and he does not know who the developer is, and he does not care to know. It is not germane to this discussion.

Mr. Harvey added that if a plan has been submitted, the town cannot take any action to rezone that property. This was in response to a question by Mr. Farmakidis.

Mr. Schock went on to add that he feels the money would be well spent to continue this study.

Osprey Bluff S/D, 12-lots, Block 43, North of Osprey Ridge – Mr. Larry Spell was in attendance for this project. The board went over the eight questions Mr. Almeida had regarding stormwater.

There was considerable concern about the stabilization of lot 12. The members felt that rather than to make a recommendation to the Town Board, that an engineer look at the stabilization for that lot and appear again before the Review Committee. At that time if this stabilization is addressed that a Special Meeting may be held to allow this project to proceed to the Town Board in the same time frame, being their December 12, 2000 meeting. Mr. Spell advised the members that should any portion of the project not suit the Building Inspector he will not allow the Final Plat to be approved until it meets his approval.

There was discussion that stormwater plans should be required for every development in Emerald Isle to contain their first 1 ½" of stormwater. Ms. Angus advised that the Inspectors require, currently, that a plan be submitted for such stormwater; however, they are not engineers and do not know if the plan submitted is adequate.

The members were concerned that an amendment be put in place to require that single-family and duplex projects submit a stormwater plan that will accommodate the 1 ½ " of stormwater the same as for commercial projects.

Motion was made by David Schock to recommend the Osprey Bluff, S/D, to return to the Review Committee on Wednesday, November 15, 2000 to address the stormwater and stabilization concern with lot 12. Second by George McLaughlin, with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

JTW, INC. Block 15, 4-lot Commercial S/D Preliminary and Final Plat – Mr. Joe Donnehoo represented this project.

This Preliminary plat had appeared before the Planning Board in the past; however, only one member was on the board at that time. Secretary Angus advised the engineer that the Preliminary Plat be resubmitted with the Final Plat to allow the entire board to be aware of what had transpired and be able to make a confident decision. Mr. Donnehoo said he had drawn a separate stormwater plan that will be recorded with each of the lots. This will be an assurance that each new owner knows, in advance, the depth to which he must go to develop the lots.

The Motion was made by Ed Dowling to proceed to the Review Committee with this project, second by David Schock with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

Motion to adjourn made by David Schock, second by George McLaughlin with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

Respectfully submitted:

Posted by The Town of Emerald Isle 11/13/2000

October 16, 2000 

Planning Board

TOWN OF EMERALD ISLE

REGULAR PLANNING BOARD MEETING

MONDAY, OCTOBER 16, 2000

 

 

The meeting was called to order by Co-chairman, Ceil Saunders. Members present were:

Ceil Saunders, Phil Almeida, George McLaughlin, Ed Dowling, Frank Vance, and David Schock and Secretary, Carol Angus. Chairman, Cary Harrison was out of town.

Approval of Minutes of Regular Meeting September 18, 2000 – Motion to approve the minutes was made by Phil Almeida, second by Ed Dowling with the correction to add a word in a quote by Gus Farmakidis. The motion was unanimously approved. (Replay of the tape verified that Mr. Farmakidis did not finish his quote).

Approval of Minutes of Special Meeting, October 09, 2000 – Motion to approve the minutes was made by George McLaughlin, second by Phil Almeida with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

Report from Town Manager – Mr. Pete Allen was attending another meeting out of town and had submitted a report of the decisions and business before the Town Board of Commissioners on Tuesday, October 11, 2000.

Report from Building Inspector – Ms. Angus reported to the board that building permits for the month of September had continued to drop with only three single family residences being permitted and a total estimated value for all permits of just over $1,000,000.00.

OLD BUSINESS:

Letter of recommendation to the Board of Commissioners regarding rezoning of current RMH (Residential/Motel/Hotel) Zoning to R-2 (One and Two family dwellings). Mr. Schock had submitted a copy of the committee’s letter to each member. The committee felt that public awareness was the best manner to approach this situation. The primary reason being that it would avoid any legal confrontation with any current landowners. The second reason is the cost which would be a minimal benefit when it could be handled by notifying all the homeowners associations or subdivision developers that this could be an infringement on their residential properties. An awareness campaign would be much more cost effective. The subdivisions that currently have covenants, if it is not already written into the documents, should add an amendment to disallow any potential hotel or motel use being able to buy up the individual property for such use.

Any subdivision not having covenants might find it to their best interest to draw such and article for their property.

Mr. Dowling asked if the next step would be to proceed with this letter to the Town Attorney prior to it being forwarded to the Town Board of Commissioners. Mr. Schock replied that it should be forwarded to the attorney. Mr. Schock said it doesn’t propose any arena where there could be legal confrontation.

Mr Schock went on to say that the Board of Commissioners was concerned about the possibility that a large corporation could purchase the RMH land, or, already built-on property in a group, to use for a motel or hotel. After conversations with Mr. Allen and some of the "legal minds" that define zoning, it gets into a highly volatile issue.

Ms. Saunders advised that since the Boards had lowered the building heights, that this would not be practical because it would cut into a corporate "dollar per acre" issue for how much they could profit by such and project. Also, without septic system being available, they would have to purchase such a large portion of land to use as septic field that it would be cost prohibitive.

Mr. Schock thinks a good campaign directed at letting the subdivision property owners know of their zoning and eliminate it through their covenants. Letters could be sent to the Property Owners Associations to alert them of this possibility. Also to do an article in the Island Review , the quarterly Emerald Tidings, and post it on the web site. Some covenants have already incorporated this into their documents, Lands End for one.

Motion was made by Ed Dowling to forward the letter submitted to the Board of Commissioners for their next meeting, second by Frank Vance with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

NEW BUSINESS:

Bill Farrington represented this project.

Mr. Dowling said he saw no bulkheading on the slope and the other two sites had no bulkheading. He wanted to know if this board should delve into that issue.

Rick Farrington said bulkheads are highly controversial by the environmentalists.

He advised that they are encouraging the growth of beach grasses on the slopes.

There was some discussion about the water retention system for water runoff regarding how well done the system was around each building.

Mr. Dowling said he was concerned about the concrete slab for the project. Mr. Bill Farrington said that sand had all been compacted and allowed to set for six months or so, so that rain and weather will help with further compaction. Rick said there have been no washouts, even with all the rain we’ve had this season.

Mr. Almeida said he wanted to look at existing and final grades on the lot. He wanted to see the methods for storm drainage. He was advised that these maps are on file with the Inspections Department. Mr. Almeida wants the dimension of the concrete walk toward Bogue Sound, the width and length. That will be added to the revised map for the next review process.

Motion to recommend this project to the Review Committee on October 18 was made by Phil Almeida with second by David Schock, with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

Mr. Larry Spell, developer, was in attendance for any questions the board may have.

Mr. McLaughlin asked if this project is near the "big hill"? He was advised by Mr. Spell that it "is" the big hill that the only disturbance will be to install the road and shoulders to access the 12 lots. The street will be a steep grade and the various lots undulate at the top of the hill.

The drainage plan is designated by arrows to show how the water will flow. It goes down the hill to a pre-existing culvert that is under the road to ditches along sides of the other road, through another culvert under Osprey Ridge Rd to another culvert that flows to the wetlands. The properties from the cul-de-sac will flow from an easement to the east to the wetlands area.

Mr. Almeida said (1) he does not see finished grades on the plan. Two (2) he is concerned about whether the culvert is adequate to carry that capacity. And, (3) there may be an erosion problem as development begins. What are the plans for erosion problems?

Mr. Spell said the street shoulders will be sodded.

Mr. Almeida said the finished grades are not clearly marked on the map he has; there is a lot of information in a small area. He went on to ask that, even though the map is to scale, that it might be advisable to have a larger map done to make it easier to read the information and contours. Mr. Spell said he would talk to Mr. McLean about doing that for the board.

Mr. Almeida tried to clarify what he was requesting; that a longitudinal section be prepared showing the slope along the road; i.e. how steep it is coming down. Then a profile how the erosion of the sides of the road will be controlled.

He also wants to be sure the culvert has adequate capacity for this much water.

He wants to see the computations to that end.

Mr. Dowling asked if there would be any work done in the 404 wetland area. Mr. Spell replied that that area will not be touched.

Motion was made by Phil Almeida to forward Osprey Bluffs to Review Committee, second by George McLaughlin, with unanimous approval.

  1. Sunset Harbor Condominiums, Lot 2, Block 38, Final Plat – Rick Farrington,
  2. Osprey Bluff, Block 43 North, 12-lot subdivision, Preliminary Plat –

COMMENTS:

Mr. Larry Spell wanted to make the comment related to rezoning from RMH to R2 that in all the projects he had developed, that the protective covenants would preclude the assumption of the subdivision as a motel or hotel use. He wanted to voice the opinion that he agreed with the Planning Board that the letter to not recommend rezoning was the best method to do, and to make property owners aware.

Mr. David Schock said that the west end of the island has the majority of any RMH that is undeveloped, Mr. Spell owning a portion of that. Mr. Spell said there is not enough of his property to make it feasible for such a use.

**********************************************************************

Vice-Chairman Saunders advised that additional information is forthcoming from Kemly-Horne regarding the traffic study to be done at Coast Guard and Emerald Drive by November 02, 2000.

Mr. Schock said he is still amazed that tax dollars were spent on the previous study and no resolution or suggestions were submitted by Kemly-Horne or Benchmark. We know we have a problem and have to do something, but they offered only an early September traffic count.

Mr. Dowling said he thought D.O.T. had given the best information and study. He felt that the two studies that were done had let everybody down. No safety, no sidewalk studies, no pedestrian comment, and suggestions for the blind curve and for drainage.

Commissioner Wootten added that the original intent was to determine what level of development the property could take. A lot of good points have been brought up, but the level of development is the first issue. The road needs to be improved, with an 80’ right of way all the way around the bend. He agreed that possibly the questions had not been asked correctly with the two firms.

Mr. Schock said he thought the firms would know what was wanted.

Commissioner Wootten reminded the members that a window of up to 18 months will be required by D.O.T. for their study. Possibly the developer should be a part of the solution.

Mr. Almeida said that the Kemly-Horne study was in conflict with the D.O.T. study, which said there would be acceptable level of service when the land was built out. He has been here on weekends in the summer and seen the traffic jams, that is not an accept-able level of service.

Mr. Rick Farrington and Bill Farrington advised the members of the regulations they have had to abide by in their pursuit of any development.

Mr. Almeida gave a background of the way the development has been done along Coast Guard Road. The plan to help the problem will be quite costly. Does the town want to hold the line at the present time and not make it worse?

Mr. Almeida read from a lengthy prepared statement (copy with these minutes). The end result to be that the Planning Board should require that a plan be submitted that shows how the project will contain the storm runoff. Mr. Almeida also had examples of land that had been filled, inspections done, and now some years later, that the houses are cracking.

Mr. Almeida then made the following suggestions:

  • If an owner wants to fill ponds or wetlands, they must provide a new retention basin of equal capacity. It should be above the water table.

    Examine 5 or 6 permits for fill and see if any improvements can be made. This is not to prevent filling, but to fill in a properly defined manner to not cause a problem to the neighbor or to the town.

There was then additional discussion between Mssrs. Farrington, Commissioner Wootten, and Planning Board Members. One of the issues Commissioner Wootten addressed was that the Inspections Dept. does not have the personnel or the tools to do stormwater plans, in house, for single family and duplex residences. The commercial projects are done by engineers. He asked that some engineering input be put toward residential lots.

Ms. Saunders said that those who fill property should not be able to create a problem for an adjoining neighbor, to gain an ocean view.

Some of the Emerald Isle residents made comments regarding their particular subdivi-sions or properties in regard to flooding.

Motion to adjourn made by Ed Dowling, second by Fil Almeida, with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

Posted by The Town of Emerald Isle 10/16/2000

October 10, 2000 

Posted by The Town of Emerald Isle 10/10/2000

September 18, 2000 

Planning Board

Town of Emerald Isle Planning Board

Minutes of Regular Meeting

Monday, September 18, 2000

The Meeting was called to order by Chairman, Cary Harrison at 7:00 P.M. Members present were: Chairman Harrison, Ceil Saunders, Frank Vance, Phil Almeida, David Schock, George McLaughlin and Ed Dowling. Others attending: Carol Angus, Secretary; James W. Taylor, Building Inspector; Pete Allen, Town Manager.

Minutes of Regular Meeting of August 21, 2000 – were approved with correction to page 2 to delete "he" in first sentence of second paragraph; and, to change the word "source" to "obstacle" (1) one page 2, paragraph 5. Also, to delete "then to the Town Board for discussion at a monthly meeting" in last paragraph on page 3. Motion to approve the minutes, as corrected, was made by Phil Almeida, second by Frank Vance, with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

Report from Town Manager – Mr. Pete Allen gave the members a brief summary of the items before the Town Board of Commissioners for their regular meeting of September 12, 2000.

Report from Building Inspector – Mr. James Taylor advised the board that the dollar value assessed for August permits to be in excess of $900,000.00. There were 4 new construction starts for single-family dwellings for the month.

Chairman Harrison asked that Item D under Old Business, Discussion of letter to be presented to Board of Commissioners regarding the rezoning of some areas of RMH zoning to R2 zoning, be tabled until the October 17th meeting. The reason for the request is that "it is not quite a finished topic". Motion to table this agenda item until October was made by Phil Almeida, second by Ed Dowling with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

Before proceeding with Old Business, Chairman Harrison advised the representatives that at the Board of Commissioners meeting on September 12, that a moratorium placed on any issuance of permits in B-3 zones until the results of the recently contracted engineering studies can be examined. There will be a special meeting held on Monday, September 25, 2000 at 7:00 for the purpose of Public Comment on this issue.

OLD BUSINESS:

 

  1. Commercial Review of Watson Hotel corner of Emerald, Islander, and Reed Drives, Block 41 – Mr. Ken Burnette, Will Riedel of Burnette Architects & Planning and Mr. Ronnie O. Watson were representing this project. Mr. Harrison asked Mr. Almeida for any comments he had regarding the stormwater plan.

    Mr. Harrison asked Mr. Almeida for any comments he had regarding the stormwater plan. Mr. Almeida said he would like additional information of the elevations, both original and finished, of the site to determine that there will be no accumulation of water in the area. He felt there were not enough elevations along the property line to show that the water will be retained on the property.

    Mr. Harrison advised that, if there were to be an off premise sign for the project, and if there were, where it will be located, size of the sign and in what zone. Mr. Almeida felt that something should be done about the water problems at Reed Dr and Islander Dr.

    Town Manager, Pete Allen, advised that the Town will probably approach this problem in the new future with 1 to 4 catch basins in the intersection. They would be piped to the ditches to be lowered to contain the water. Mr. Harrison asked Mr. Taylor, Building Inspector, if the patios, as indicated, can encroach into the setbacks. Mr. Taylor advised this is allowed, as long as the encroachment is not covered by a roof.

    Motion to proceed with this project to Review Committee on Sept. 20 was made by Ceil Saunders, second by Phil Almeida with unanimous approval in favor of the Motion.

    Because Mr. Ronnie Watson will be out of town for the Review Committee meeting On Wednesday, he was asked if he had any comments. Mr. Watson said he wanted to do a project that will be a credit to the town and was looking forward to begining. There was a drawing of the proposed hotel and surroundings that will be available at the review committee meeting.

    Mr. Gus Farmakidis asked to be heard regarding this project and was recognized by Chairman Harrison. Mr. Farmakidis said he did not know this item was going to be on the agenda, but he had something to say. He said somewhere he read that in a hotel, one room used ten times or one hundred times the water that a normal house uses. It generates ten times to one hundred times the amount of garbage that one single family house uses. The aquifer is being reduced and your going to put these things in there, 58 rooms. Don’t even consider all this water it’s going to use? The aquifer is being reduced, there’s all kinds of stuff in the paper. Is this all BULL.

    Your telling me the dumps are being filled up and this will generate so much more trash. This should be stopped, no one says a word about this. Is the aquifer just a renewable source? He doesn’t understand this and he doesn’t think we should allow stuff like this. That’s his water, and when it goes what happens to it? These guys take all the money, at his expense. That’s great that they pay more taxes, but how about the water? The water is significant, not their taxes.

    Mr. Harrison advised that this is a renewable aquifer.

    Mr. Faramakidis asked about the articles in the paper that say eastern Carolina is having tremendous with all that. That aquifer goes way down. He is sorry, but he really disagrees with this thing. For what good, not for his good, always for someone else’s good. How about the aquifer and that trash. You just doubled the trash and filled the dumps.

  2. Reed Drive Commercial Park S/D, Preliminary Plat, Block 42 Southwest corner of Emerald Drive and Coast Guard Road - Mr. Alan Bell and Mr. John McLean, in attendance to represent this project. Mr. McLean advised that they and appeared before the Review Committee and some changes were requested and radius’ were to be redrawn. He thought this would result in an informal return to Review committee. He didn’t realize he must return to Planning Board every time to return to Review Committee. The items that were addressed have been changed. There is 12’ wide pavement as opposed to 10’ wide for the one-way street among other things.

    Mr. Harrison said he hoped Mr. McLean and Mr. Watson (property owner) understood the driving force behind the traffic studies being done for that area. The Town wants to provide the infrastructure for a major intersection. The Town is not trying to impede your project or what you plan to do.

    Mr. McLean said he understands the Town’s concern, but hoped they did not drag their feet and will be done in a timely manner.

    Mr. Harrison said that the Town had opted to hire two firms to look at this area rather than wait for a free resource from DOT and not have any idea of when it might be returned. He went on to advise of a Special Meeting being held on September 25, 2000 to issue a moratorium on new commercial projects until this study can be reviewed in depth.

    Mr. Almeida asked Mr. McLean why a 1991 survey was being used for this project.

    Mr. McLean said that the topography does not change that much and to do it over again it would cost thousands of dollars when topos don’t change that much.

    Mr. Almeida said that wetlands might change.

    McLean responded that he may be correct.

    Mr. Almeida has concerns about the one-way traffic exiting on to Coast Guard Rd. The one-way traffic street width and pavement width is not defined anywhere in the ordinances.

    Mr. Taylor said that with the proposal as it is shown there would be 12’ of pavement, which is two feet more than half of a two-way street for one lane. (Two way Street has minimum 20’ pavement).

    Mr. McLean had no real response to Mr. Almeida’s question other than that maybe the trucks take the exit road to enter to avoid the blind curve. He said he and Mr. Bell will "revisit" if that is necessary. Mr. McLean advised that if this is a paved city street the town will receive Powell Bill funding whether it is one-way or two-way.

    Mr. McLaughlin said he would like to see, on the map, where the entrance to Pebble Beach is located and where the access to Reed Drive is located.

    Mr. Allen told the board that the traffic studies should be available by the end of the month. He is personally going to pick up one of the studies on Thursday, September 28, 2000.

    Mr. Taylor, building inspector, asked that the portion of the wetland that will be filled must be redesignated to create the new wetland for the tradeoff. Mr. McLean said it will be immediately adjacent to the existing wetland.

     

  3. Sea Turtle and Sandfence Awareness – Mr. Frank Vance gave a detailed breakdown on the proposed sea turtle/sandfence/lighting awareness program. He submitted a very well written proposal broken down into a number of different aspects. First and foremost is to let the public be aware through rental brochures, newsletters, website, signage, stickers on light switches, cost factors, etc. Mass mailings would also be a way to let just the oceanfront owners be aware of the project. This proposal will be forwarded to the Town Board of Commissioners for their review at their October meeting. Motion to recommended this proposal to the Town Board for their October meeting was made by David Schock, second by George McLaughlin with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

    (Previously tabled)

  4. Discussion of letter to be presented to Board of Commissioners regarding the rezoning of some areas of RMH to R-2 zoning. Mr. Harrison asked that this issue be held until the October meeting because the letter had not yet been done as a final draft.
  5. Recommendation of Wireless Communications Ordinance – Mr. Harrison was commended by the board for all the time he has spent on this ordinance and the second draft. Mr. Harrison said he had spent nine months on this ordinance. He advised that Carteret Craven EMC had sent him a plat of Emerald Isle that shows every pole that could be used for communications antennas. His map being presented to the Town Board will indicate the air accesses, the water towers, power/utility poles, etc. Motion to recommend the Wireless Communications draft to the Town Board for their October meeting was made by George McLaughlin second by Ceil Saunders, with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

 

There being no further business before the board, motion was made to adjourn by David Schock, second by Phil Almeida with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.

8:15 P.M.

Posted by The Town of Emerald Isle 09/18/2000
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