Sunday, July 3, 2022

Brunswick Commissioners approve Hazel’s Branch rezoning, against planning board’s recommendation

Brunswick County Commissioners approved rezoning a 1.1-acre lot from residential to commercial on Hazels Branch Road, between an area that's seen voluntary annexations into the Town of Leland in recent years.

Brunswick County Commissioners approved rezoning a 1.1-acre lot from residential to commercial on Hazels Branch Road, between an area that's seen voluntary annexations into the Town of Leland in recent years.
Brunswick County Commissioners approved rezoning a 1.1-acre lot from residential to commercial on Hazels Branch Road, between an area that’s seen voluntary annexations into the Town of Leland in recent years. Leland’s municipal limits are shown in purple, the approximate location of the newly rezoned lot is represented as a star. (Port City Daily/Courtesy Google Maps)

BRUNSWICK COUNTY — Despite recommendations from Brunswick County’s staff and Planning Board, Commissioners voted 4-1 this week to approve a commercial rezoning off Highway 17.

The property owner of the 1.1-acre parcel on Hazels Branch Road first sought the rezoning in July 2018.

Related: In growing area on Highway 17, Brunswick County could deny commercial rezoning

In July, Planning Board voted to continue a hearing about the lot, and later denied its rezoning in November. In December, Commissioners continued their hearing on the lot, and approved its rezoning on Tuesday. Only Commissioner Mike Forte, according to the county’s clerk, voted to deny the rezoning.

Sandwiched between Leland’s limits

In a growing commercial area off Highway 17, the property was rezoned from rural low-density residential to commercial Tuesday. About .3-miles from the Circle K on Highway 17, the county’s approval of the change has resulted in “spot zoning.”

Brunswick County’s staff also recommended denial of the rezoning. According to a July 2018 staff report, the lot is likely spot zoning because it’s not on an intersection and it’s not directly adjacent to other commercial lots. A portion of the lot is classified in the flood zone, and at a November Planning Board meeting, one neighbor in Stoney Creek shared concerns about “excessive development in the area.”

The lot is between Leland’s municipal limits on the southern side of Highway 17 and the town’s satellite limits in Stoney Creek. Multiple voluntary annexations into Leland’s municipal limits nearby have been previously pitched or are already underway.

Voluntary annexation of land to the west of Stoney Creek for the 100 to 120 townhouse development, Bishops Creek, is currently stalled. Three parcels to the west of the town’s limits in Brunswick Forest are up for voluntary annexation.


Send tips and comments to Johanna Ferebee at johanna@localvoicemedia.com

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