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Crab Creek homeowners win delay of zoning request to allow storage units

Homeowners who live near the site of a proposed storage unit development hold up signs against a zoning permit. Homeowners who live near the site of a proposed storage unit development hold up signs against a zoning permit.

Homeowners in the Crab Creek community say they plan to use a traffic impact analysis, noise and light pollution studies and a real estate appraisal in their effort to oppose a large storage unit facility on Crab Creek Road across from Curtis Road.


Facing an overflow crowd on Wednesday afternoon, the Henderson County Zoning Board of Adjustment granted a request from the opponents’ attorney to delay a rezoning hearing until June 30 and move it to a larger facility. More than 40 people filled the seats in a meeting room at the Henderson County building at 100 N. King St. and more than a dozen waited outside the room.
The attorney, John Noor, told the zoning board that he had just been retained on Friday and had insufficient time to find a traffic engineer, stormwater engineer and appraiser who could evaluate the proposed project and testify "on three days’ notice.”
Applicant Matthew Cooke is seeking a special-use permit, to build 125,000 square feet of mini-storage units on 9½ acres in an R2R residential zone east of Camp Blue Star and west of Evans Road. Cooke told a county Technical Review Committee last week that he is working to accommodate neighbors' concerns on lighting, hours and buffering. His site plan shows the buildout in four phases of 39,000, 51,000, 24,000 and 10,000 square feet, an office and a gated entrance.
Fritz McPhail, who owns 160 acres on Crab Creek Road next to Camp Blue Star, helped organize the fight against the storage units.
“We’re pleased because we have time to deal with it,” he said after the zoning board voted unanimously to grant the delay. “This thing just came up a week ago when we were notified. We did what we could do. We obviously have a lot of people here. They recognized that, postponed the meeting.”
Will McIntyre, a filmmaker, was among the opponents who turned out.
“We look down on it,” he said. “We’re very concerned about the lighting and the traffic. It’s hard enough to get out of the road as it is. We’re very much concerned about it.”
Randy Doss, whose 1.2-acre residential lot adjoins the proposed development site, said the postponement will give the homeowners time to more thoroughly evaluate the potential impacts of noise, light, stormwater runoff and traffic.
“We have assumptions but we need experts,” he said. “Those are three things we have to understand and make sure that there isn’t a damage for us.”
“The impacts of this proposal are several fold,” Doss said in an online petition he posted when the neighbors were notified of the rezoning request. “There is the negative jolt to nature and our wildlife from the proposed 9+ acres being paved over to support rows of storage buildings are obvious. The additional traffic generation for an already busy, single lane residential road along with new and random customers’ accessing their units is an unsettling notion for what we consider a serene environment.”