Board OKs Permit for West Pine Mobile Classrooms
Action by the Moore County Planning Board has cleared the way for the school system to continue its expansion plan at West Pine Middle School.
At a Thursday night meeting, the planning board agreed to amend an existing conditional use permit and authorized the Moore County Board of Education to place three mobile classrooms on the West Pine campus until a building expansion is complete.
Phillip Boles, speaking on behalf of the schools, said the mobile classrooms would be removed once the expansion is complete.
The temporary classrooms are needed to serve students being assigned from Academy Heights School, which is being closed in an economy move. Other Academy Heights students are being assigned to Pinehurst Elementary School.
The board’s action amends a conditional use permit granted in 2009 as part of the school system’s master capital improvement plan.
The planned expansion calls for a two-phase construction schedule, with the first phase to include four classrooms added to the southern wing. Another four classrooms will be added to the northern wing in the second phase.
Staff planner Robert Farrell said the application appeared to be in compliance and recommended approval. Board member Les Murray’s motion for approval received a unanimous vote.
A quasi-judicial public hearing was called on the school application, but no one signed up to speak. No objections were raised.
It was one of three such hearings held during the board meeting.
No objections were raised at the hearing on a conditional use permit requested by Howard Warren to place a manufactured home as an accessory dwelling on a 6.98-acre tract on Warren Road. The property, which is zoned Rural Agricultural, is located east of the intersection with Putnam-Glendon Road.
Home Business Tabled
However, a third request was tabled until a July meeting after board members asked a series of questions about parking and buffering issues.
Petitioners Pedro Arredondo and Marie Angelica Nieves asked for the permit to operate an automobile service business on a three-acre parcel on Kyle Road near the intersection with Niagara-Carthage Road. The permit was requested for use of the property as a home occupation of an industrial or commercial nature.
Member Rodney Pickler, who had visited the site, questioned the use of right of way beneath a power line for parking. He cited personal knowledge of restrictions in such areas and asked that the issue be investigated.
He also questioned the appearance of the approach to the business area and expressed fear that the site could become an eyesore without appropriate protective measures. Surrounding properties are zoned RA.
The petitioners plan a four-bay shop structure requiring five parking spaces for each service bay, a total of 20 parking spaces. The property was previously used as a woodworking shop.
Vice chairman Dave Kinney, presiding in the absence of chairwoman Martha Blake, advised that by tabling the matter, the board was also continuing the public hearing until the next meeting. Kinney said that the hearing would remain open until then.
The board was also asked to settle an unusual zoning issue surrounding property de-annexed by the town of Cameron.
Farrell said the 44.27 acres on Dalrymple Road presently have no zoning designation at all. It was previously zoned for residential agricultural uses, but that was changed in 2003 when the town of Cameron accepted a petition from Mr. and Mrs. Royce Edmonds for satellite annexation. In 2008, the state legislature approved a local bill de-annexing the property.
Royce Edmonds asked the county to change the property back to its original zoning district, RA.
The board voted unanimously to recommend approval, and the matter now goes to the board of commissioners for final action.
Board members then engaged in discussion about the best way to secure public participation in the Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) process.
Planning Director Joey Raczkowski said a public workshop schedule will be provided at a future meeting and asked the board for direction in the meantime.
Raczkowski said the county administration had recommended that groups of stakeholders be collected and encouraged to participate. Responding to that suggestion, the planning staff has prepared five sets of potential stakeholders — community associations, the development community, civic groups, environmental advocates, and government boards and agencies.
“There is no better resource than you and your community,” Raczkowski said, urging the board to encourage friends and associates to participate in the public participation process.
Asked how many workshops would be needed, Raczkowski said that would depend on the number of issues to be addressed.
Board member Robert Hayter expressed disappointment that the board review process had been changed before it was completed. He said the page-by-page review of the proposed ordinance was halted when it was only 75 to 80 percent complete and that volunteer time had been wasted.
“I thought the board was making progress,” Hayter said. “I’m disappointed, frankly.”
However, Hayter said he liked the list of potential stakeholders.
Among the groups listed are homeowners associations, churches, Chamber of Commerce, Convention and Visitors Bureau, Habitat for Humanity, the Moore County Homebuilders Association, Partners in Progress, the area Realtors Association, Sandhills Area Land Trust, Save Our Sandhills, the county school system, the Agriculture Advisory Board, the BRAC (Base Realignment and Closure) Regional Task Force, potteries and the Small Area A Advisory Committee.
“If one person from each of these organizations shows up, it would die of its own weight,” observed Kinney.
The board discussed methods of attracting participation and holding the attention of the public.
“We want everything to be as open and transparent as possible,” Raczkowski said.
The UDO is an initiative to compile all planning and zoning regulations into one comprehensive ordinance that will be easier to understand and to administer. The review process includes removal of redundancies, clarification of conflicting regulations, correction of errors and clarification of confusing language.
Raczkowski said the staff will prepare further information for action at a future board meeting.
Contact Florence Gilkeson at email@example.com.
More like this story