Neighbors concerns growing about proposed development on Topsail Beach

Neighbors concerns growing about proposed development on Topsail Beach
Published: Mar. 31, 2023 at 7:58 PM EDT
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TOPSAIL BEACH, N.C. (WECT) - Neighbors in one coastal town have growing concerns about a man’s contract to purchase 150 acres of conservation land, and plans to rezone and develop it.

“We don’t want resort-type communities. We don’t want gated communities. This is not the nature of this town,” Roy Costa, a Topsail Beach resident, said.

The concerns come from seeing a proposal for a 30-acre family compound on what is currently conservation land.

“And for 40 years, it’s been zoned conservation. And we have been hearing from experts and permitting agencies that it is zoned appropriately as conservation,” Nancy Patton, a Topsail Beach resident, said.

Todd Olson is under contract to buy the 150-acre piece of property, but neighbors have been voicing their opposition since the initial proposal in October of 2022.

Roy Costa has lived in Topsail Beach for 20 years now and says they don’t want to see any development at all.

“So, there’s the becoming the sense by many citizens that our concerns are not being taken as seriously as we hoped that they might have been and that’s very discouraging.”

Olson’s initial proposal showed a more than 30-acre development, but after a community meeting, plans changed and decreased the family compound to about 16 acres. After seeing the change, neighbors were hopeful that he would be willing to compromise, but his final application this week shows a proposed 30-acre development.

“It really owns up to its name and reputation as Serenity Point. Any future, you know, development into that will destroy that image that all these people have had, including ourselves for generations at this point,” Costa said.

Olson has said that he plans to keep nearly 120 acres as conservation land, but neighbors are concerned that could change.

“We look at that every day. Save the postcards, because they’ll be gone If this gets approved,” Costa said.

The Topsail Beach planning board has 65 days to make an official recommendation to the board of commissioners on whether or not the land should be rezoned to allow for Olson’s development.

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