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Board approves Oakmont rezoning request

Oakmont Acquisition is one step closer to rezoning part of its property for industrial use after its attorneys approached the county planning board Tuesday evening.
Charles Brown, an attorney with Brown, Brown and Brown in Albemarle, and fellow attorney Max Justice from Charlotte, approached the board regarding the issue.
Oakmont Acquisition asked that 31 acres of a 57-acre tract be rezoned from RA (Residential Agricultural) to M2 (Heavy Industrial). The same request was made for a 2.93-acre tract. Both properties are located on Buster Road near Oakboro.
According to a memo sent from county planner Bob Remsburg to the board, part of the land in the first tract is within Oakboro’s jurisdiction and the same request will be sent to the town regarding that section.
“An industrial facility is proposed for these parcels and the other nearby properties owned by Oakmont Acquisition,” the memo said. The smaller property already contains a home and outbuildings.
Brown said Oakmont has informed the owners of adjoining properties of its intent to have the properties rezoned. Oakmont also owns properties west and southwest of Oakboro, he added.
When board member Frank Sparger asked if Oakmont would make the same request about the other properties it owns, Brown said that while these were the only current requests, others may follow in the future.
Alan Love was the only person who spoke against the rezoning, saying that a stream near the property runs to the Rocky River. While he said he wasn’t fully opposed to the request, he did want to ensure a buffer was in place between the planned facilities and the stream to protect the environment.
Brown said he will work with Love to identify his specific concerns, saying that Oakmont also values the environment.
Remsburg noted both properties are in a growth area identified in the 2010 Stanly County Land-Use Plan.
“Traffic on Buster Road in this area averages 530 vehicles per day and on N.C. (Highway) 205 averages 1,700 vehicles per day, according to the 2015 NCDOT traffic count,” the memo said.
In a separate phone call, Brown said that his only goal was to ensure that those properties’ zoning codes matched those of other Oakmont properties in the area.
Remsburg said that given the details provided, the planning staff did recommend the board pass the application.
The board unanimously approved the application, moving the case on to the county commissioners, who will have the final say in the rezoning request.

Imari Scarbrough is a freelance contributor for The Stanly News and Press.