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City Council to consider apartment complex again

SALISBURY — A committee is expected to recommend that City Council approve zoning changes to allow a controversial 80-unit apartment complex off South Main Street but require the construction of a fence and remove planned driveway and sidewalk connections with surrounding neighborhoods.
City Council will consider the committee’s report and take up the issue of rezoning about 5 acres to allow for the development of Abbington Court, a campus-style, limited income apartment complex planned near the Rosemont neighborhood. Many residents spoke out against the apartments during a City Council meeting last month.
City Council will meet at 4 p.m. Tuesday in City Hall, 217 S. Main St.
The Salisbury Planning Board first heard this request in April and recommended in favor of the conditional district rezoning subject to recommended conditions. After opposition from residents, City Council voted to have council members Brian Miller and Karen Alexander form a committee to review the petition.
Miller and Alexander met with about 15 concerned residents, as well as developer Karen Perry of Clemmons, who is competing for tax credits to finance the project and plans to buy the land from John Leatherman of Salisbury.
The committee permitted limited dialogue between Perry and residents, who are concerned about pedestrian access from the apartments to the neighborhood on Rosemont Street, as well as scale and massing of the proposed buildings, density and the potential for undesired activities.
Ultimately, Miller and Alexander agreed to recommend that a fence must be installed along the entire west property line, which removes the proposed sidewalk connection to Rosemont Street, and that additional landscape buffering also be provided along the new fence. In addition, Perry agreed to remove from consideration a proposed driveway to the adjacent Colonial Village development, which is also tax credit-financed housing.
Miller and Alexander directed city staff to work the Perry’s designer to update the proposed site plan by removing the sidewalk connection and showing a fence along the entire west property line and additional landscape buffering.
Also on Tuesday’s agenda:
• N.C. Rep. Carl Ford will make a presentation.
• Mayor Paul Woodson will proclaim Letter Carriers’ Food Drive May 10, National Police Week May 11-17, Peace Officers Memorial Day May 14, Armed Forces Day May 17, Veterans Memorial Day May 26 and Community Action Month.
• City Council will consider issuing a special use permit for Strata Solar in the 2000 block Mooresville Road.
The company wants to install a roughly 37-acre solar farm on an 200 acres along Mooresville Road on Randy Reamer’s horse farm. The parcel is zoned rural residential with an airport zoning.
The council will hold a public hearing.
• City Council will consider adopting a resolution supporting the State Historic Rehabilitation Investment program.
• The council will consider amending language that defines the make-up and responsibilities of the Salisbury-Rowan Human Relations Council.
• City Council will consider allowing parking along the west side of the 100 block of South Clay Street and a portion of the east side of the 200 block of South Lee Street.
• City Manager Doug Paris will make comments.
Contact reporter Emily Ford at 704-797-4264.

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