Thursday, August 28, 2008

Outcome of the Public Hearing regarding the Development Proposals in Carova

The Currituck Couty Commissioners voted in favor (4-1) to approve the measure. The minutes from the meeting and the Video of the session can be found here

Previous Post:

It is apparent from the response and phone calls that the last post entry was not comprehensive enough for many of you. Let me clarify what the public hearing is about and give a little history.

There are three large areas in the Carova Beach subdivision that were originally platted for business use though never actually zoned as commercial property; one area by the fire station, one area at MP 23, and one area at the Virginia line.

Now the owner/developer of the Carova parcels, Ocean-Carova, would like to reconfigure the large parcels into residential building sites to be sold off in the future. These lots will be much larger than the current Carova single family residential lots because they have to conform to current Currituck County lot size requirements, thus the density will be much less than what currently exists. Additionally, the developers are proposing that a number of acres be deeded to Currituck County for its land bank. Those who champion less development and no commercial activity should be thrilled at the proposal as this is probably the best case scenario for lower density while still maintaining some economic viability for the developers.

Here's where the public hearing comes into play: Since all three parcels have portions in the Area of Environmental Concern (AEC), it falls into the Coastal Resources Commission's CAMA jurisdiction. CAMA (Coastal Area Management Act)is enforced by the CRC who reviewed the proposal and noticed that there were certain breaks in the dune line that were being used as driving easements that were not platted to be there. Additionally, there are easements that have been platted to exist that are not being utilized. So, the CRC indicated that it was their preference that instead of blocking off the illegal dune cross-overs and bulldozing the dunes where the easements should be, why not just establish easements where people are driving and remove the platted easements that have not been physically cut in? Ultimately the theory is that there will be less frontal dune disturbance that way. To make such a shift of easements requires a public hearing, so there you have it. Note: The easements only impact land between Sandfiddler Road and the Ocean.