Town Council Backtracks To OK 7-Lot Subdivision

SMITHFIELD – The Smithfield Town Council last month turned down a developer’s plan for a small residential subdivision at the intersection of NC 210 and Galilee Road because it was incompatible with the town’s Comprehensive Plan which had envisioned commercial or institutional uses of the 4.8-acre tract.

After agreeing to reconsider the matter at Tuesday night’s meeting, council members heard testimony from an attorney representing the developer that convinced them the proposed subdivision is compatible with the town’s plan after all, especially in light of changing circumstances.

At last month’s public hearing, Planning Director Stephen Wensman told the council his staff was recommending approval of the subdivision because of the absence of county sewerage there which likely would be required for a commercial venture. Seven residential lots with septic tanks would be acceptable, he said.

Attorney Samuel Morris, representing CMH Homes (the developer), at this week’s meeting pointed to a state court’s ruling that compatibility with a Comprehensive Plan alone is not required if a project is in keeping with surrounding land uses. The proposed subdivision, named Jubilee Creek, is adjacent to properties with single-family houses. The site is also next to West Smithfield Elementary School.

The council was reminded that no opposition to the plan came forth at last month’s public hearing on the plan for Jubilee Creek.

In the end, the council gave approval without a dissenting vote to the plan after adding two conditions: that sidewalks be constructed along both NC 210 and Galilee Road and that fencing be erected between the site and the school grounds. Town Attorney Bob Spence said the council’s decision, in effect, amends the town’s Comprehensive Plan to show the new subdivision to be in compliance.

Decision on large Buffalo Road subdivision put off again

The council was scheduled to revisit a more controversial subdivision plan at Tuesday’s meeting but once again tabled the matter at the developer’s request. The proposal, which calls for a 222-lot subdivision on 168 acres adjacent to the existing Bradford Park subdivision off Buffalo Road, drew considerable public opposition at a hearing in January, and council members expressed concerns about proposed lot sizes and overall density of dwellings.

Town Manager Mike Scott said he and Planning Director Wensman recently had a “positive” meeting with the developer who told them a revised plan likely won’t be ready to bring before the council until July. Adams & Hodge Engineering is planning the project; the site is owned by Guy and Ross Lampe.

Light Industrial zoning at airport approved by 4-3 vote

No one stepped forward during Tuesday’s public hearing on a request to rezone about 15 acres across Swift Creek Road from Johnston Regional Airport to the town’s Light Industrial category. But Councilman Sloan Stevens voiced concerns about rezoning the site without a specific plan for its use.

That could be done if the petitioners, Harrison Tulloss and Aaron Grosclose, had requested conditional zoning, Town Attorney Spence noted. Instead, they sought a rezoning that would permit a number of low-impact industrial uses so they could market the property, the council was told.

Councilmen John Dunn and Marlon Lee joined Mr. Stevens in voting to deny the rezoning while Councilmen David Barbour, Steve Rabil, and Travis Scott voted in favor. In the absence of Councilman Roger Wood, Mayor Andy Moore broke the tie with an affirmative vote.

Town’s electrical system earns “Platinum” designation

Mayor Moore presented a plaque from the American Public Power Association designating Smithfield’s Electric Department as a Reliable Public Power Provider with “Platinum” status after scoring 95 points out of a possible 100 on an evaluation that included cost data, program documentation, and town policies and regulations. The “Platinum” designation is good for three years, Public Utilities Director Ted Credle told the council.

Town asked to restore original street name to two blocks

Phyllis Palmer, a former resident of East Smithfield’s Pine Acres neighborhood, asked the council to restore the original name to a two-block segment of Oak Street leading away from East Market Street that was renamed as part of diverging Dogwood Street years ago. The change would affect no one’s postal address since no houses front that section of the street, she said. The council took no action on her request, although Councilman Scott said it “sounds like a reasonable request.

Story courtesy The Smithfield Weekly Sun


  1. This area does need more affordable housing, the pre-inflation boom raised prices like crazy. However they also need to keep in mind not just infrastructure such as water and sewer, but Schools, do we have enough school capacity and buses etc for this many new Families amongst the proposed subdivisions, are their enough officers and equipment for them, trash people, etc.

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