Granite Quarry working on ordinance change to regulate driveways

Published 12:05 am Friday, December 31, 2021

GRANITE QUARRY — Granite Quarry is still working through updates that would modernize how it allows driveways to be built, and those changes have been pushed back again.

The ordinance revision outlines an approval process and standards for building driveways to owners’ property, including where responsibility lies for sidewalk and curb cuts.

The change would delate the short list of regulations on driveways the town currently has and replace it with a comprehensive ordinance that will regulate standards for how the driveways are built, how they connect to streets and sidewalks and how wide they can be.

The ordinance change has been pushed back and revised several times already during the past few months. The latest continuance was in November, when it was requested the Board of Aldermen adopt the ordinance but it opted to send it back to the town’s engineering firm for more revisions.

The latest version was presented to the town’s Board of Aldermen on Dec. 13 with updates from the town’s engineering firm Alley, William, Carmen and King.

The engineering firm’s additions were mostly technical, adding notes to meet N.C. Department of Transportation standards, additional points of inspection, and specifications that where driveways connect to sidewalks and roadways must be 6 inches thick among others.

The new ordinance would allow for other surfaces, including gravel beyond the right-of-way for the road.

The engineering firm also added a stipulation that water meters would not be located in driveways or the driveway apron unless approved by Salisbury Rowan Utilities.

The board quickly followed the recommendation from town staff to continue the item to the January meeting. Alderman Jim Constantino made the motion to due so, citing the number of recommended changes and the need to review them.

On Thursday, Town Manager Larry Smith told the Post the issue will be recommended to be continued again in January because the town ran out of time to get the ordinance ready before town planner Steve Blount left to take on the same role with Spencer. Smith said there are too many questions about the contents of the ordinance to move forward with it in January

“There were a lot of technical specs in there,” Smith said.

There are legal questions about the ordinance, including if it will be equally enforced in town limits and the extra territorial jurisdiction as well as if the technical specifications are still best industry standards because there are carryovers from an old ordinance.

Smith will request the item be removed from the board’s January agenda with the intention to pick the issue back up once the town is able to hire a new planner. Smith said the issue is not time sensitive.

About Carl Blankenship

Carl Blankenship has covered education for the Post since December 2019. Before coming to Salisbury he was a staff writer for The Avery Journal-Times in Newland and graduated from Appalachian State University in 2017, where he was editor of The Appalachian.

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