Editor’s note: A previous version of this article stated the goal of Z-10-15 was to build a Circle K on Poole Road. The building is already under construction; the rezoning case would allow the store to remain open 24 hours.
Planning Commissioners met Tuesday to hear numerous rezoning cases and a site plan case that would see a new Union Bank built on Strickland Road.
The Union Bank case, SP-48-14, focused on the lack of trees in the proposal, the lack of a 50-foot natural protective yard along Strickland Road and the need for enhanced stormwater management.
Tucker McKenzie, a designer with the local engineering firm Withers and Ravenel, spoke during the public hearing about the need to create a “dry pond,” which would be used to gather stormwater when it rained. It was decided in the meeting that trees and shrubs would be planted along the northeast border of the property. The case was recommended for approval by the commission.
Z-41-14, which involved the rezoning of 20 acres in a soon-to-be-annexed part of Wake County, was recommended for approval. The rezoning increased residential density and was found to be consistent with the comprehensive plan and future land use map.
While there had been no outstanding issues, staff reported that a statutory protest petition had originally been filed but was considered invalid because this was a first-time rezoning case. Michael Birch, representing the applicant, said that the petition had been filed in September 2014, months before negotiations with the neighbors had taken place.
Part of the negotiations with the neighbors, Birch said, had led to the undisturbed areas along the northwest side of the property and a plan to add tree conservation as part of the subdivision. He noted there were multiple access points at the north and south to disperse traffic and the goal of the case was to reduce average lot sizes for the aggregate.
Z-10-15, which involved the rezoning of a 3-acre parcel on Poole Road, was deferred. The company wanted to keep the Circle K, which is currently under construction, open 24-hours to be of service to patients arriving and departing from the nearby WakeMed hospital, adding that doing so would better keep it from being vandalized.
In the public hearing, neighbors of the property raised questions about the safety of keeping the Circle K open at all hours, citing cases where nearby businesses had been robbed during the late hours of the night. Planning commission members wanted to see the research saying it would be a safer practice to keep the Circle K open.
Z-8-15, which involved the rezoning of a property in the airport overlay district, was recommended for approval. The proposed rezoning aims to remove the airport overlay district designation, which would lead to increased residential density.
Micheal Birch, representing the applicant, reported that a presentation had been made to the northwest citizens advisory council (CAC) but no vote had been taken on it. He said he had proposed to the members at the CAC meeting that they could vote on May 12, before a city council public hearing, so the information would be available to be councilors.