The Path to NX – A Reasonable and Fair Proposal

path to nx

A few days ago North Raleigh residents from River Oaks, Bedford, Oakcroft, Falls River, Wood Spring, and Daltons Ridge met with Councilor John Odom to discuss what all in attendance agree is a reasonable and fair plan for mapping properties at Dunn and Falls of Neuse under the new UDO development ordinance.

Dear Councilor Odom,

Thank you for meeting with us this evening.  Here is a recap of the proposal that we discussed for moving forward with the remapping of Dunn and Falls of Neuse.  I have also attached the PowerPoint presentation that we gave.  Please do not hesitate to contact us.  We look forward to your decision prior to July 7 (prior to July 1 would be ideal so we can better prepare for the remapping hearing).

In summary, we believe that there is an excellent way to achieve a win/win/win solution whereby the property owners can rezone to NX without loss of entitlements (and with a modest increase in entitlements), we can achieve our goal of maintaining current zoning, and the City can move forward with retiring all legacy districts.  We refer to this plan as a direct path to NX.  It is not a new plan.  It was proposed by Ira Botvinick and is quite simple.  Remap the property at Dunn and Falls of Neuse to OX and allow the property owner to immediately request a rezoning.  That request could be to NX with the following additional conditions:

  • Maintain the OX retail cap of 4000 square feet per floor per building (this is a gain in entitlement over the 3000 square feet per floor per building under current zoning)
  • Maintain the OX prohibition on fuel sales (this is the current restriction for BC as well as for OX)
  • Maintain the OX prohibition on drive-ins (this is the current restriction for BC as well as for OX)
  • Maintain the OX prohibition on drive-thrus (this is the current restriction for BC as well as for OX)

For a three story building, there is a modest increase in entitlement from 9,000 square feet of retail to 12,000 square feet per building.  Importantly, by rezoning to NX with these conditions, the entitlement for free standing retail is retained.

The other conditions that were applied in 1994 to the property will also carry forward as per current policy.  These conditions verbatim from Z-55-94 are the following:

Conditions:

  1. Any development of the property shall include a pedestrian access to the property adjoining this tract on the south and/or east side.
  2. The following uses shall not be permitted in the Buffer Commercial CUD District:
  3. Utility Substations
  4. Penal Facilities
  5. Telecommunications Towers
  6. Outdoor Stadiums
  7. Parking Deck or Garage
  8. Schools
  9. Family or Group Care Homes or Facilities
  10. Supportive Housing Residences
  11. Right of way for Neuse River Drive (Dunn Road) will remain at R-4 values for reimbursement purposes.
  12. Upon development, the rate of stormwater runoff will comply with CR 7107.

After this process is completed, then the property owner will, of course, continue to have the right to request a rezoning which will follow the normal rezoning process.

In contrast, if the property is simply allowed to remap to NX, then there is a huge increase in entitlements to the detriment of the surround property owners and to our larger community.  There would be no restriction on the size of retail.  Fuel sales would be allowed. Drive-ins would be allowed. Drive-thrus would be allowed.  In contrast, the above plan is fair and equitable.

As we discussed, this plan could be used similarly for any other BC properties.  One example would be to apply this process to the bicycle shop at the base of Falls Dam.  That property is BC.  If allowed to remap to NX as recommended by the Planning Department, then the owners will have every right to build a gas station at the base of the Dam.  There are several BC properties in Raleigh where this process would be appropriate in our opinion.

Warmest Regards,
David Cox and Neighbors from North Raleigh

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