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Salisbury City Council to consider Faith Road shopping center, fire station No. 3

By Josh Bergeron
josh.bergeron@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — When the City Council meets Tuesday, it could give final zoning approvals to a shopping center on Faith Road and a new fire station on Mahaley Avenue.

The Faith Road shopping center is estimated to be 11,000 square feet and sit adjacent to the Rowan County Department of Social Services. Meanwhile, the new fire station, a replacement for the existing station No. 3, would sit on Mahaley Avenue and measure about 17,700 square feet.

The council will consider zoning matters for both during its regularly scheduled 5 p.m. meeting at Salisbury City Hall — 217 South Main St.

Known as Faith Road Shops, the commercial development would sit on 1.8 acres of land located at 517 Faith Road. Plans included with Tuesday’s agenda don’t identify specific tenants interested in the proposed Faith Road shopping center.

The proposed development does not comply with either the city’s Vision 2020 Comprehensive Plan or Eastern Gateway Area Plan because both plans say it’s important to maintain established residential areas. However, city staff have recommended approval of the shopping complex because they don’t anticipate heavy residential growth in the neighborhood.

To approve the request, Salisbury City Council members specifically would need to rezone the site to corridor mixed use. Currently, the site is split between general and urban residential.  The council would also need to approve a conditional district overlay that for the shopping center.

When it considered the matter in September, the Salisbury Planning Board approved the request last month by a 7-1 count.

Meanwhile, the council will also consider rezoning 1.17 acres on Mahaley Road for a new Salisbury fire station No. 3. The existing station sits a short distance away — on West Innes Street.

Specifically, the council would need to vote to rezone land to residential mix use with a conditional use district.

By a 3-1 count, City Council previously approved the matter. Councilman Kenny Hardin was the lone “no” vote. Tuesday’s vote is considered a “second reading.”

If approved, construction of the new fire station would not begin for another three years.

In other business on Tuesday’s agenda:

• Rowan-Salisbury Schools Superintendent Lynn Moody will make a presentation to reallocate funds initially used to pay co-principals at Knox Middle School.

Tuesday’s council agenda state’s the reallocated funds would be used to “support staff supplements and improving ready efficiency.” A more detailed breakdown of the proposal states that Knox Middle School would create a STEM lab with $110,000 in funding.

Tuesday’s agenda states that the Salisbury City Council would not need to provide any additional money to Rowan-Salisbury Schools as a result of Moody’s proposal.

In a proposal submitted to the council, Rowan-Salisbury Schools says the STEM lab would focus on coding and engineering. The lab would feed students into Salisbury High School’s recently announced engineering and advanced manufacturing program, according to a proposal submitted to the Salisbury City Council.

To create the STEM lab, Rowan-Salisbury School would use $40,000 for renovation costs, $20,000 for robotics and coding tools, $20,0000 for furniture, $10,0000 for professional development for teachers, $10,000 for summer camp and $10,000 for weekend and after school costs.

• The Council will consider approval demolition of a structure at 228 East Kerr St., near the intersection of Depot and East Kerr streets.

The structure, a one-story, one-bay brick warehouse, would be demolished to accommodate redevelopment as part of the Railwalk Market project. The demolition would not include the building’s brick facade.

Designated a “contributing historic structure,” the building’s demolition previously received approval from the Historic Preservation Commission.

• The council will receive its regular update from Salisbury Police Chief Jerry Stokes.

Contact Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.

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