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Council OKs 99-unit duplex development on Francis Road, requires turn lane

The Hendersonville City Council on Thursday authorized a 99-unit development on Francis Road on the condition that the developer add a left turn lane into the site. The vote was 4-1 with council member Jennifer Hensley voting no.

The Cottages at Mastermind development would be made up of 49 duplexes, one single condo and a clubhouse with a pool and fitness room.

Councilman Jerry Smith sought to impose a condition on the rezoning that would require the developer to add a left-turn lane if a traffic study determined that the improvement was needed. Ultimately, the council voted to require the left-turn lane and drop the requirement for a traffic impact analysis (TIA).

"This is what some of us need in order to vote for this," Smith said. "All we're asking is (a commitment that) we agree to do it unless the TIA says we don't need it."

Smith said he had asked the city's traffic engineering consultant about the safety.

"His concern was less about traffic counts but more about the curve of that road and the fact that cars turning left into that development would be at the end of that curve," he said. "He did agree that a left-hand turn lane would make that safer."

The developer, Tom Martinson of DHI Communities, asked for a rezoning from C-2 Secondary Business and R-40 Low Density Residential to PRD-CZD Planned Residential Development Conditional Zoning District. There are 340 trees on the site; 240 would be removed for the development.

The city council has approved more than 2,400 units of housing over the past couple of years but of those just 846 are under construction, planning manager Matthew Manley told the council.