This FAQ page has been curated to ensure our community is brought up to speed and fully understands both the conditions and outcome of the proposed project as well as the impacts of a residential project without required conditions, Finally, we want to share the facts of the proposal vs the misinformation being disseminated throughout the community. If concerns from the opposition are genuine, and those in opposition agree that this property will be developed in some form, then this conditional project actually offers the best possible solution for the property and community.
Did You Know?
- Distributed content from opposing parties makes false assumptions to the traffic count for Starling Marine and uses data from a different type of Community than what is being proposed. Starling Marine operates under normal business hours: Monday -Friday and a half-day on Saturday, and closed on Sunday. A residential neighborhood would produce traffic 24 hours a day. Ridge Care operates with staff shift changes that are outside of peak traffic times. A residential neighborhood would be in line with peak traffic times.
- Based upon DOT data about residential traffic counts as well as independent traffic counts in communities along Hwy 24, this same property, developed as R20, would increase the traffic by nearly 100% from the proposed project. To summarize, this project as proposed would create 50% less traffic than an R20 residential neighborhood. In addition, the residential neighborhood would have continuous traffic coming and going, pulling boats, construction trailers, landscape trailers, UPS, FedEx, Mail, Uber, food deliveries, & drivers of all ages. If traffic and safety were a genuine concern, then our proposed project would be a better solution than developing as R20, R15, R10, etc.
- The NCDOT has been provided with a copy of the proposed site plan and made their recommendations to include a turning lane, and two separate entrances for both properties and the developer has agreed to these recommendations at their expense.
- This property has no access to any of the streets in any of the Spooner’s Creek neighborhoods. The proposed development will only be accessible from Hwy 24.
- The development of this project ensures the protection of all wetlands on this property in addition to a large buffering section along the Eastern Boundary. This is a condition written into the Conditional Rezoning Application.
- In addition to the natural wetland buffering, Starling Marine has agreed to install an 8’ privacy fence & evergreen trees and shrubs along the Eastern Border up to the wetlands to create more privacy for the properties in the front of Harbor Drive. (Please see site plan for details).
- Starling Marine and Ridge Care have agreed to install a sidewalk across the entire front of this stretch of Hwy 24 along with an additional landscape buffer which will beautify the road frontage and offer safety for pedestrians in the area.
- If this property is developed into R20 homes, the home owner’s will have the right to clear the wetlands on their lots as long as they do not remove the root base. A residential developer can build within 30’ of the average high watermark with a CAMA permit. Our proposed project is far outside of any buffers, which creates even more protection. If those in opposition due to the wetlands and environmental impacts are genuinely concerned, would they want a project that makes it conditional to never disturb the wetlands? Why would there be opposition to a project that guarantees to protect the wetlands, while knowing that the current zoning does not have the same restrictions?
- Furthermore, a residential homeowner would likely create a water view, while this conditional project is interested in visibility along Hwy 24 only. If this property were to be developed R20, these buffers will be removed to create a view for individual homeowners, which in turn creates more noise, more light from the 24-hour Super Walmart & Murphy’s gas station across the street, and more impact to wildlife and natural resources.
- Our conditional project will be bound by all State Storm Water Restrictions, permits, and protections? This means that all stormwater produced by these projects will be required to be captured and treated before it has an opportunity to reach the environmental impact areas of Spooner’s Creek. This also means that the information you are receiving about stormwater runoff and flooding in Spooner’s Creek is inaccurate. The flooding experienced in Spooner’s Creek is from “Tidal Flooding” during a major storm event. Think about this: do you experience flooding in Spooner’s Creek or the Bogue Sound from heavy rains? No. The flooding that occurs is from major storms, heavy winds, lunar tides, etc. The community desires a project like ours that captures and protects the area from stormwater runoff and is regulated by the State.
- A residential neighborhood does not have the same restrictions as this conditional rezoning request. A residential lot can cover up to 40% of it is buildable space without stormwater management. Plus, there are no restrictions regarding lawn fertilization, irrigation, boat washing, boat engine overflows, and other potential pollutants from a residential neighborhood. If the genuine concern of our project is about stormwater runoff and protection against flooding and water quality, then our project meets those concerns. An R20 development will not have the same restrictions.
- This proposed development will pay for the extension of city water and sewer services to serve this project which means all wastewater produced will be removed from the site and treated off site. If this property were developed as R20, it would result in 30-40 additional septic systems that will leech wastewater and pollutants into the ground around the wetlands of Spooner’s Creek. An R20 residential development would be considerably more damaging to the wetlands and surrounding environment.
- Our development will be annexed into the Town of Morehead City and produce thousands of dollars in tax revenue annually. This additional tax revenue could provide more school resource officers, school nurses, new parks, and rec facilities, or more first responders for our City. If the property were developed as R20, it will contribute zero dollars in resources to the Town of Morehead City.
- The Town of Morehead City Land Use Plan on Figure 4 of the CAMA Land Use Map shows existing Commercial Land use in Spooner’s Creek. This is because the acreage at the end of Land’s End and Harbor Drive were zoned commercial marine which included a marina, restaurant, fuel pumps, apartments, a tennis club, and other uses. Commercial use is not new to Neighborhood 9 and has actually been in existence for decades. The Land Use Plan’s policy for Neighborhood 9 encourages medium-density residential and mixed-use development in areas where water and sewer can be extended and has access to “major streets”. Our proposed development is encouraged by the policies of the Land Use Plan adopted by the Town Council.