China Grove approves two rezones

Published 12:05 am Friday, May 10, 2024

CHINA GROVE — A rezoning that would pave the way for a expansion at the South Rowan Hospital location was approved during the China Grove Town Council meeting on Tuesday.

According to a staff report presented by Planning and Development Director Teresa Barringer, the existing hospital has outgrown its 4,100 square feet, prompting the need to develop a new 11,200-square-foot facility to meet the needs of a growing clientele.

The site, located at the southeast corner of the North Main Street and East Church Street intersection, is part of the former Tuscarora Yarns Inc. mill site which closed and then was demolished between 2009 and 2014. A portion of the site was developed in 2017 for the existing South Rowan Animal Hospital.

The rezoning request would amend the parcel to permit conditional zoning.

The conditional zoning element is intended to allow flexibility in permitted usage that promotes “consistency of the density and characteristics of the adjacent residential uses and is reasonable and consistent with the following Land Use Plan strategy of encouraging the development of higher density and multi-family residential uses in the town center and neighborhood residential areas.”

During deliberations, the China Grove Planning Board expressed concerns regarding the NCDOT requirement to change the existing driveway of East Church Street to become a right-in and right-out only. The owner reportedly expressed opposition to the requirement, noting the existing animal hospital property may include leasing or selling in the future, adding that the imposed requirement would restrict access, encouraging patrons to enter the new location via the North Main Street access, bringing a safety concern to both his clientele and their pets.

The town council approved the usage with the following conditions:

  • Allow a Type B 30-inch landscape screening in lieu of a fence or wall required by Unified Development Ordinance (Section for parking within 40 ft. of a right-of-way. 
  • Allow a maximum front setback of 10 feet. 
  • The closure of the existing driveway cut on N. Main Street is required, and the curb must be replaced as required by NCDOT
  • Allow administrative approval of 5 percent changes to site design, orientation, and/or exterior elevations.  

In other town development news, the council approved a rezoning of at the corner of North Main Street and Old Rockwell Road, across from China Grove Middle School.

The request was to rezone the roughly half-acre property from highway business to mixed-residential with conditional zoning. The rezoning will allow the property to be subdivided into three lots for single-family homes.

The property has frontage along both North Main Street and Old Rockwell Road. There will be one driveway onto North Main Street and the other two lots will be accessed from Old Rockwell Road. 

The conditions for approval include: 

  • The condition is to exceed the maximum front setback for the mixed residential (R-M) zoning district of 25 feet. up to 39.5 feet. 
  • Condition to allow administrative approval of 10 percent +/- changes to site design, orientation, and/or exterior elevations. 

Staff comments provided to the town council indicated that the Land Use Plan designation of neighborhood residential signifies the residential areas of the town that are the densest and closest in proximity to commercial areas and major thoroughfares. 

“The district is characterized by its variety of residential types, including single-family homes and townhouses,” staff comments stated. “The district includes small neighborhood or ‘pocket’ parks that service the needs of local residents. The design of these developments should emphasize smaller lots, building placement close to the street, and interconnectivity between neighborhoods, sidewalks, and street trees. The goal of this district is to create a sense of place and a pedestrian-friendly atmosphere at a higher density.”