Economic development site rezoned to allow wholesaling businesses

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 4, 2016

By Josh Bergeron

SALISBURY — In a unanimous decision, county commissioners on Monday added two new potential uses for one of Rowan’s best economic development sites.

At roughly 80 acres, the plot of land is nicknamed “the Trevey site” and sits adjacent to Interstate 85 on Long Ferry Road. The most significant part of Monday’s rezoning decision makes slight changes in zoning classifications to allow wholesale and distribution businesses to build on the property.

It’s unclear whether Rowan County officials are actively pitching the site to a specific, prospective client. However, Rowan Works Economic Development Director Robert Van Geons said there’s not a pending announcement for the site. Van Geons said the Trevey site has been frequently pitched to potential businesses.

“It will open up a couple additional uses that we’ll now be able to propose to prospective businesses,” he said after Monday’s commissioners meeting.

When asked about plans for the Trevey site, commissioners Chairman Greg Edds said the county is “optimistically preparing for growth.”

County commissioners held a public hearing for the property. However, no one spoke for or against the proposal, which previously received the Rowan County Planning Board’s approval.

The specific proposal approved Monday shifts an overwhelming majority of the Trevey site from the county’s 85-ED-1 zoning to the 85-ED-2 zoning. Both are classifications used for property near I-85 designated as a site for businesses.

As part of the same request, commissioners also approved a change just north of a service road that cuts through the Trevey site. A small plot of land will now be classified as commercial, business industrial.

In a report presented to commissioners, county staff said the zoning request was consistent with surrounding designations.

In other business from Monday’s meeting:

• For a second time, county commissioners approved an ordinance that aims to require more humane restraints for outdoor animals.

Proposed by Commissioner Craig Pierce, the ordinance sets specific limits on the types of restraints that can be used for outdoor animals and the size of pens and kennels used for animals.  Previously, commissioners had approved the measure by a 4-1 vote. The measure had to be approved a second time because it wasn’t unanimous. This time it was unanimous.

Commissioners Vice Chairman Jim Greene had previously been the lone no vote. Greene said he voted in favor of the measure on Monday because it wouldn’t go into effect until January 1. He said the delay was enough time to ensure that shelter staff adapt to ongoing changes at the facility.

• As part of the consent agenda, commissioners approved 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 at $833,150.

• As part of the consent agenda, declared a wide variety of items at West End Plaza surplus property.

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

Rowan County now plans to auction off the items.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.