The R-5 residential single family zoning on Markland Drive wasn’t “saved” at the Greensboro City Council meeting on Tuesday, June 18, but not a single person opposed the rezoning, and the main opponent supported the rezoning.
All but a six foot strip (617 square feet) of the R-5 zoned area was rezoned to Conditional District Commercial Medium (CD-C-M) along with the rest of the 1.3 acre tract at 2301 Battleground Ave. by a unanimous vote of the Greensboro City Council.
“Save R-5” was a great marketing campaign, but as was revealed at the City Council meeting, the dispute was not over keeping the .1 of an acre zoned residential but about building a fence on the property line.
Whatever the property was zoned, according to the city zoning ordinance, the majority of the .1 acre lot was going to be designated as a buffer.
Marc Isaacson of Isaacson Sheridan, representing ALB Enterprise Holdings which owns Mythos Grill and requested the rezoning, explained to the City Council that the issues concerning the rezoning of .1 of an acre from R-5 to CD-C-M had been resolved which required some minor changes to the boundaries of the rezoning request.
Isaacson said that a strip of land six feet wide along the property line had been conveyed to the adjacent property owner Jennifer Leung at 2310 Markland Dr.
An addition had also been made to one of the five conditions which read, “Vehicular access shall be limited to only Battleground Avenue.” A phrase was added to that condition, “(i.e., no vehicular ingress or egress on Markland Drive.)” Since the original condition limiting access to Battleground Avenue would prohibit access to Markland Drive, the additional phrase restates as a negative what the condition already stated as a positive.
Adding the phrase didn’t alter the conditions. Which leaves the only difference between the Zoning Commission meeting where Leung opposed the rezoning and the City Council meeting where she supported the rezoning was the conveyance of 617 square feet of land to Leung.
According to the hoopla on social media, the signs and tee-shirts, rezoning .1 of an acre on Markland was a danger to the entire Guilford Hills community, which might make some people wonder why rezoning .085 of an acre on Markland is something the main opponent supported.
Isaacson did provide an answer for a question that was left unanswered at the Zoning Commission meeting which is why this little triangle of land was zoned residential when the rest of the tract was commercial. Isaacson said that back when the tract was zoned commercial leaving a strip zoned residential was the way the city provided a buffer. In the current zoning ordinance the buffering requirements are much more stringent and precise, setting average and minimum widths and specifying the number and type of trees and shrubs that have to be planted per linear foot.
Most of the .085 acres that was rezoned commercial will be used as a, buffer a small portion will be part of the parking lot.
The good news is the rezoning cleared the way for Mythos Grill to move across the street.
And you would have preferred that we continued to oppose the zoning change, and might well have stopped it? Really? I represented Ms. Leung through the negotiations. We worked out a resolution to Ms. Leung’s concerns (and that of many city residents) that residential zoning sometimes seems to be regarded as more a nuisance than an asset. The fact that you thought it was useful to write about the matter is an indication that the “Save R-5” campaign really did have resonance. Certainly, we at least raised municipal awareness that the attributes provided by residential zoning should be given great weight when there is a proposal to change that residential zoning. That’s what I said in my own remarks at the city council hearing on the matter. We not only accomplished that considerable goal, but Ms. Leung and the zoning proponents each demonstrated substantial good faith in cooperating to reach a point comfortable for everyone. If you had asked me. I would have been happy to explain this anytime.
Thanks. But I think I got it. Jennifer Leung got what she wanted a six foot strip of land along the property line. But the R-5 zoning wasn’t saved. All but that six foot strip that had been zoned R-5 is now zoned commercial.