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Albemarle Council denies map amendment rezone request

The Albemarle City Council on Monday voted against a map amendment that would have rezoned a tract on the Northeast Connector from R-10 (general residential) to R-8 (neighborhood residential).

The location of the tract is northwest of the intersection of Northeast Connector and Badin Road.

The applicant, Kyle diPretoro of dP Development, wanted to rezone roughly 60 acres to R-8 to increase the density of single-family houses in the parcel due to minimal wetland disturbance, according to the application.

diPretoro told council the plan is to construct 118 single-family lots on the 60-acre tract, which would equate to less than two lots per acre. He said dP Development, which is based in Rock Hill, South Carolina, has been speaking with community members who expressed a desire for smaller lots.

“We’ve done our research, we’ve done our homework, the builders have done their homework and the objective here is to build a product in keeping with that,” he said.

diPretoro noted in the application that the development would adhere to R-8 zoning standards in development and provide adequate tree buffers around the perimeter of the land.

He noted that a traffic study would also soon be completed.

The city’s Planning and Zoning Board voted 5-1 last week to recommend City Council approve the rezoning.

Several community members spoke out against the rezoning request, with concerns about the area increasing in density.

Mark Lowder, who owns a home directly adjacent to the tract of land, specified he was not opposed to a new development, just to the land being rezoned to R-8. He said it would “change the neighborhood” and adversely impact the numerous wildlife that live in the area.

Some council members were concerned about the increased density, especially with the neighboring parcels zoned R-10.

Upon a motion by Mayor Pro-Tem Martha Sue Hall, which was seconded by Councilman Benton Dry, the board voted 4-2 to deny the rezoning request. Councilmen Dexter Townsend and Chris Whitley opposed the motion to deny.

“Based on what I heard tonight … I did not want to approve it … because of the size of the lots,” Hall said in explaining why she made the motion to deny the request.

About Chris Miller

Chris Miller has been with the SNAP since January 2019. He is a graduate of NC State and received his Master's in Journalism from the University of Maryland. He previously wrote for the Capital News Service in Annapolis, where many of his stories on immigration and culture were published in national papers via the AP wire.

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