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Cornelius News

Cornelius Planning Board will address Caroline, OMB Thursday

Caroline rendering from Proffitt Dixon Partners

Aug. 30. By Dave Vieser. The Cornelius Planning Board will tackle the Greenway Gartens and Caroline projects at a special meeting Thursday Sept. 2 at 6:30 pm in Town Hall.

In their current configuration, the two projects would add over 800 new residential units in the form of townhomes and apartments, some of which would be age restricted.

The developments would also include extensive commercial space and, at Greenway Gartens, the Olde Mecklenburg Brewery and beer garden.

As the size and details of the proposals became better known, residents, especially in Antiquity, expressed strong opposition.

“The fight to get them to slow down and do this thoughtfully—even though it doesn’t fit—goes on,” said Antiquity resident Ginger Knudson. Letters have been distributed throughout the community and from Knudson’s perspective, “our residents now appear to be overwhelmingly against these projects.”

At the Sept. 2 meeting, the planning board can take one of three steps:

1. Recommend approval to the Town Board.
2. Recommend denial to the Town Board.
3. Table one or both of the proposals.

BILODEAU

The first two measures would be recommendations to the town commissioners—which they are not required to follow. For example, in June, the Town Board approved a scaled-down version of a new residential development on West Catawba Avenue. An earlier, larger plan had received a unanimous denial recommendation from the Planning Board. However, four of the five commissioners voted in favor of the smaller project without sending it back to the Planning Board for further review.

Only Commissioner Denis Bilodeau voted against that measure.

“We have gone out to the public many times with the earlier proposal and now they have no time to respond to these significant changes,” Bilodeau said as he voted no. “This procedure concerns me.”

Background

A vote to table on Sept. 2 would raise an entirely different situation, according to Deputy Town Manager Wayne Herron.

HERRON

“If the Planning Board tables either of the applications on Sept. 2 the Town Board cannot consider that application on Sept. 7. The Town Board is required to receive a recommendation from the Planning Board before making their final consideration,” Herron said.

The Sept. 2 meeting will take place at Town Hall. Based on the opposition which has surfaced a large crowd may attend. However, the meeting will also be live streamed on the town’s web site www.cornelius.org. Simply access the link ‘watch meetings online.’

Discussion

3 Responses to “Cornelius Planning Board will address Caroline, OMB Thursday”

  1. I guess I’ll never see my friends in Antiquity or drive to downtown Cornelius anymore.
    It would probably take two hours to get home.
    This growth is good for business and the community?
    I think not.

    Posted by James S. | August 27, 2021, 1:34 pm
  2. Horrible idea. The deforestation alone, especially in this time of climate change, should have everyone concerned. Cornelius doesn’t need this!

    Posted by Susan J | August 27, 2021, 3:22 pm
  3. I think we’ve seen this game played enough times to know what’s coming our way. The developers come back with a less ambitious density proposal and the planning board, followed by the commissioners applaud them for their compromise. The development gets approved, with pats on the back for all involved. And we watch as our trees disappear and cars clog our already overwhelmed infrastructure. I’d love to be proven wrong in this case, but based on recent history with this board, it’s not promising.

    Posted by Justin Bossert | August 27, 2021, 3:47 pm

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