Carolina Beach Town Council blocks yacht club’s application to build fence over resident’s driveway

Carolina Beach Town Council blocks yacht club’s application to build fence over resident’s driveway
Published: Sep. 13, 2022 at 11:16 PM EDT
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CAROLINA BEACH, N.C. (WECT) - The Carolina Beach Town Council seemingly blocked an application from the Carolina Beach Yacht Club to build a fence at its September 13 meeting.

The fence would have crossed an easement that connects Georgia and Florida avenues, turning those streets into dead ends and restricting the community’s access to a nearby park. To make matters worse, it would have blocked one couple’s driveway.

The Machovecs have lived on Georgia Avenue for five years. When building their home, they got permission from the town to design their garage and driveway to connect to the easement, meaning it’s the only way they’re able to remove their vehicles from their carport and garage.

They had heard rumors about the owner of Carolina Beach Yacht Club wanting to build a fence to try to expand parking for a couple of years. They weren’t concerned until Kerry Machovec recently saw town employees marking water lines outside of her home. That’s when she called town hall and found out the yacht club had submitted an application to build a fence along the club’s property line.

The problem is that property line is on the other side of the easement and about a foot onto the Machovecs’ driveway. The proposed fence would cut off the driveway’s access to the road, block the lot next door from the road and cut Florida Avenue off from Georgia Avenue.

“UPS, the trash men, the postman, FedEx -- everybody uses this road,” said Kerry Machovec. “Last weekend, there was a fire engine and an ambulance parked here because there was someone in distress on the beach.”

Several community members were prepared to voice their concerns at Tuesday night’s meeting despite it not being on the council’s agenda. However, they wouldn’t get a chance before the council took action.

Just a few minutes into the meeting, the members announced a resolution authorizing the town to take ownership of the right-of-way connecting Georgia Avenue to Florida Avenue, citing “the best interest of the town and the public.”

“We all knew it was swirling around and assumed at some point in time that this would be something we’d need to address,” Carolina Beach Councilman Joe Benson said. “It is in the best interest of the town and the public for the town to acquire the right-of-way over the property.”

“I was just overwhelmed,” said Kerry Machovec after the resolution announcement. “To have them stand up for us, it means a lot to not just me but to everyone in the community.”

WECT reached out to the person listed on the application for the fence as the yacht club’s owner to ask why they wanted to put up the fence in the first place. They declined to comment.

As for how town council members were able to go into a closed session that was not on the agenda, two members have declined to comment, citing legal reasons.

Carolina Beach fence application
Carolina Beach fence application(Jeremy Hardison)