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Commissioners’ Monday agenda hints at business development in North Rowan

By Josh Bergeron

josh.bergeron@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — County commissioners may have found a suitor for one of Rowan’s best economic development sites.

Commissioners have fast-tracked a rezoning request for a plot of land in northern Rowan. Nicknamed the “Trevey site,” the property measures roughly 80 acres. It’s owned by a collection of people and sits on Long Ferry Road, near Interstate I-85.

Before the Rowan County Planning Board even considered the rezoning, county commissioners scheduled the matter for Monday’s 3 p.m. meeting in the county administration building on West Innes Street.

The Planning Board, however, approved the request during its meeting Sept. 26.

A public hearing will be held on the request Monday. County commissioners and other officials haven’t publicly disclosed who the suitor, buyer or tenant might be.

The specific zoning changes requested may give some indication about the business intentions of the potential suitor. Monday’s request would make a small alteration in zoning to allow for distribution and wholesaling operations.

Wholesale operation

Monday’s agenda description narrows the list of suitors further.

“Planning staff recently met with Rowan Works (Economic Development) regarding a potential development opportunity at this location, which would require 85-ED-2 zoning designation and a conditional use permit,” the agenda states.

Under those conditions, the county’s zoning laws would allow for a wholesale trade operation — where goods are purchased and sold in large quantities to resellers or professional users, not consumers.

The applicant is Vernon Powell, a Greensboro real estate agent. County staff’s report on the project specifically notes that wholesale trade is the most significant difference between the requested 85-ED-2 zoning and the tract’s current 85-ED-1 zoning.

Another zoning change is requested just north of a service road that cuts through the Trevey property. It would shift a small plot of land to the county’s commercial, business and industrial zoning.

In a report, county staff say the requests are consistent with surrounding zonings — clearing the way for an uneventful, unanimous approval on Monday.

Other business coming up in Monday’s meeting:

• Commissioners are set to approve two significant paving projects at the Rowan County Airport.

The specific projects include rehabilitating the airport’s north ramp and extending a ramp on the south end to suit a new corporate hangar. J.T. Russell and Sons, headquartered in Albemarle, submitted the lowest bid for the project ,$833,150.

The item appears on county commissioners’ consent agenda.

Surplus property

• Commissioners are scheduled to declare a litany of items at West End Plaza as surplus property.

Once declared surplus, Rowan County could auction the various items off.

Items include shelving, display cases, portable and stationary kiosk units, light poles, sees, singe, counters, light fixtures, stools, CD players, shipping containers, a semi-trailer, refrigerators, freezers, a lawn mower, restaurant equipment and various other items.

Officials plan to place county departments inside of West End Plaza. By declaring property as surplus, the county is auctioning off much of the items used previously by private businesses.

• Commissioners will approve animal ordinance changes for a second time.

The ordinance changes require more humane restraints for animals kept outdoors. After holding a public hearing, commissioners previously approved the ordinance during a September meeting.

• Commissioners are scheduled to increase internet connection speeds for primary internet services and its 12 remote sites.

The total cost for the contract up for consideration is $67,438.56. The contract is with Time Warner Cable.

Rowan County had previously considered whether it could use city-owned Fibrant as an internet provider.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246

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