Dozens pack Leland meeting regarding new zoning category - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Dozens pack Leland meeting regarding new zoning category

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Dozens of residents from the Waterford Community packed the house at Leland Town Hall Tuesday night as a sign of solidarity. Dozens of residents from the Waterford Community packed the house at Leland Town Hall Tuesday night as a sign of solidarity.

LELAND, NC (WECT) - Dozens of residents from the Waterford Community packed the house at Leland Town Hall Tuesday night as a sign of solidarity.

Leland town leaders are considering re-zoning their neighborhood, which is currently zoned for commercial use only.

Town leaders did not hear from the public at this meeting. Instead, the purpose of the meeting was to gather information about the details of the project.

Town leaders are looking to create a new zoning category called a "multi-use exceptional design."

The Vining Group is looking at a large portion of commercial land in the Waterford community that they want to build a 250 unit, 3 story apartment Complex.

But the sale is contingent on the change of zoning request for that partial of land, which is what the town is now considering.

"We are looking to make this an exceptional design district," said Town Manager David Hollis. "We want to make affordable housing for all kinds of people and families in this area, but we also want to keep this district as a mixed-use zone, with commercial dwellings, too."

However, many residents are opposed to the idea.

Residents say they are opposed to the new development because the residents of the new facility will not be forced to pay homeowners dues.

They also are concerned that their backyard will now be a huge apartment complex with traffic and parking issues.

Town staff has come up with a set of requirements using a "point system" to determine the town's biggest priorities when it comes to development in that area.

That "point system" will be used to determine if this new apartment complex meets the standards of the town in terms of traffic, parking, economics, demographics, etc.

Before any applicant asks for rezoning, a traffic study by a professional engineer must be completed.

Council will hold a public hearing on Dec. 20at 7 p.m. At that meeting, council will take further public comment and take any action that they deem appropriate.

Meanwhile, residents from the Waterford Community are taking action. Members of the HOA are meeting on Dec. 18 at 7 p.m. at the Magnolia Greens banquet room to discuss their plans to oppose the new development.

Waterford residents are also gathering signatures on a petition against the proposal which they plan to submit to council at the public hearing on Dec. 20.

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