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Tuesday September 21st

Board of Alderman approves Lloyd Farm rezoning, project moves ahead

The Carrboro Board of Aldermen voted 5-2 on Oct. 23 to rezone Lloyd Farm after rejecting the proposed project two years ago.

The property at 700 Old Fayetteville Road consists of 40 acres in Carrboro.

In 2016, the board initially voted against the project. Regardless of the vote, concerns were raised about how the development would account for the additional traffic created by the development.

Board member Damon Seils, one of two who voted against the project this time, said it'll will now move to its next step. He said he had concerns with the project's design.

“The project is going to be a traditional 20th century suburban style strip-mall," Seils said. "I think we should be moving away from that.”

The project will include a residential piece for senior housing, retail stores and a group of office buildings.

There will also be a small affordable housing component. The "cottages" and some of the rental apartments will be offered as affordable units.

If the developer can't figure out a way to supply additional funds for the component, funding will be provided through the town, Seils said.

Alderman Randee Haven-O'Donnell, who voted for rezoning the project, said the board raised doubts about how the project would handle drainage from storm water.

She also highlighted the changes made to the Land Use Ordinance that would cause the project to have a different footprint.

"But the most important thing is not even that footprint, it’s the fact that the neighbors couldn’t be part of direct dialogue through that process because that process is the existing Land Use Ordinance,' she said. "The developers could just come in and check off each thing that they’re doing and proceed without direct conversation with the neighbors.”

Haven-O’Donnell said deliberation of the project has been going on as far back as 2014 with a public hearing for the proposed rezoning project.

The board created a mediation team, including the parties that would be involved in the process. Members included were the Argus Development Group LLC, the developers behind the project, the Town of Carrboro and representatives from the adjacent neighborhood.

For Argus Development to proceed with the project, the mediation team agreed on four conditions, which would make the project more beneficial to all parties involved.

These conditions included a stormwater utility, stormwater manager, an advisory board and federal funds to buyout the property on Lloyd Farm that were flood prone, Haven-O'Donnell said.

She said three of the initiatives — creating a stormwater utility and advisory commission, and hiring a manager — were achieved.

The rezoning will benefit the city economically through property and sales taxes, although the revenue will likely go towards the management of stormwater and traffic while the county will profit from the development regardless, Seils said.

@ares_z19

city@dailytarheel.com

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