LNR/ Blount Street Commons Requests Ammendment to Master Plan

Post date: Apr 10, 2012 7:23:15 PM

Leaders from Mordecai and Oakwood met with reps from LNR on Thursday, March 22 from 5:00 to 6:0 p.m. at the Lewis Smith House (515 N. Blount Street) in Blount Street Commons to discuss their proposed ammendment to their master plan which will go before City Council on April 3. The item which is listed as agenda item Q.3. states the following:

A hearing to consider a request from Michael Birch on behalf of LNR Blount Street, LLC and the State of North Carolina for a master plan amendment to allow an increase of 250 dwelling units and 25,000 square feet of commercial use to an approved master plan on 21.69 acres on the southern side of East Peace Street, eastern side of Wilmington Street, western side of Person Street, and the northern side of East Lane Street. The properties are zoned Office and Institution I, Office and Institution II, Residential 30, Neighborhood/Business, Historic Overlay District, Downtown Overlay District, Pedestrian/Business Overlay District, and a Planned Development Overlay District – Conditional Use (MP-1-06-North Blount Street Amendment).

In his invitation to the meeting, David Welch of LNR stated:

"As you may know, we are pursuing a density increase, 2 driveway access points and flexibility in the locations of the 50 visitor parking spaces for our Blount Street Commons project. We have met with the City Planning Staff over the last 8 months, conducted traffic impact analysis and were in front of the Planning Commission last week. At the Planning Commission, we received a 6-1 vote in favor of the amendment. Before we meet with the City Council, we would like to meet with you and we will walk you through our proposed changes and address any comments or concerns you may have."

After a short presentation where he explained that most of the density increase was associated with the new apartment complex, Welch opened the meeting to discussion and questions. Matthew Brown from Oakwood expressed concern about the access to the relocated houses on Person Street just south of the Murphy School and after some discussion Welch Proposed that the alley to those houses remain open for vehicle access from their backyards. Philip Bernard from Mordecai and Person Street Partnership noted that he planned to contact real estate agent John Butler who represents the .59 acre commercial/residential parcel on the NE corner of Person and Peace Streets across from Krispy Kreme. Bernard said that now that Rapid Fitness and Person Street Plaza were showing movement on the North End of Person Street that he planned to discuss with Butler how to get things moving in his parcel on the South End.

At the end of the meeting, everyone seemed to be satisfied with the ammendment at proposed with the change of the alley entrance to remain open.

Being a good steward in this community is important to our company and we want to communicate with you on an ongoing basis. While things have been slow over the last couple of years, without much to communicate, activity is picking up. There will be several “cranes” in the air in the near future at Blount Street Commons which I will also update at the meeting. Momentum is building at the Commons.

I look forward to seeing you on Thursday. Should you have any questions before the meeting, please feel free to call me.