Planning commission to vote on Hillsboro Cove and discuss rezoning
By Kerri Bartlett, Assistant Editor
Lifelong county resident Chuck Lynch currently owns the property where Old Hillsboro Cove would be built, which has been in his family since 1961. Photo by Kerri Bartlett
The Williamson County planning commissioners will meet tonight at 7 p.m. to discuss the next steps of the proposed Hillsboro Cove development, a project that has impassioned multiple residents who live along Old Hillsboro Road.
At issue, is a 34-acre development consisting of 20 homes – each built on one-acre parcels.
Hillsboro Cove, represented by Hillsboro Development, LLC, was deferred by the planning commission August 8.
Since then, some residents have banned together in an effort to restrict zoning in the area to halt developments that include plans for one home per acre density.
Therefore, a rezoning petition with 31 resident’s signatures is under consideration by the planning commission.
The petition was submitted to planning staff requesting that the east side of Old Hillsboro Road and Del Rio Pike be rezoned from Rural Preservation-1 to Rural Preservation-5, a measure that would prohibit one-acre density developments.
Instead of building one home per acre (Rural Preservation-1), a home would be required to be built on at least a five-acre lot (Rural Preservation-5) per the petition’s request, resulting in consistent zoning on both sides of the road. Currently, the west side of the road is zoned for the later.
County Commissioner Mary Brockman, District 9, who lives on a farm on Old Hillsboro Road, supports the petition.
She has voiced her opposition to the development, citing her desire to preserve the historic and pastoral beauty of the area.
“Rural preservation as specified in the Land Use Plan consists of large lots and small farms for agricultural purposes,”
Brockman said. She believes that the Hillsboro Cove development could threaten the purpose of rural preservation land uses in the area.
However, the development falls within the legal bounds of all county rules and regulations of development.
According to Williamson County Planning Director Mike Matteson, AICP, the proposed development is consistent with the zoning plan for the area.
Also, regarding the rezoning, a county planning staff report states that “staff does not believe the existing zoning in this area is inconsistent with the Comprehensive [Land Use] Plan. However, the argument can be made that the requested zoning is not inconsistent with the overall goals and policies of the Plan.”
“The community became galvanized by the request to subdivide the Lynch property,” Brockman said.
Lifelong county resident Chuck Lynch currently owns the property where Old Hillsboro Cove would be built, which has been in his family since 1961.
Lynch believes in his rights as a property owner to make decisions on the use of his land within county guidelines.
“I think that people should be able do whatever they want to do with their property. For fifty-two years, I haven’t told anyone what to do with theirs, and I’m not going to start now,” Lynch said.
Mary Brockman stands firm in rezoning the surrounding area.
“The community of stakeholders could well begin to see their special landscape eroded if this new suburban design takes hold,” she wrote in a letter to the commission.
“I am for property rights, and I am not against Bob Parks. In a perfect world, this should have been done in 1988 [as part of the county zoning in the Land Use Plan], but sometimes there’s a catalyst for change and this was the catalyst that got people to act.”
Resident Mary Wade who lives on Hillsboro Road next door to the Lynch property also signed the petition.
“I am for comprehensive rezoning for the area on the east side of Old Hillsboro Road, without spot rezoning,” Wade said. “If the area is rezoned it should included all properties on that side not just some. It should’ve been done long ago.”
For related stories, see:
Old Hillsboro Road: Rural preservation versus residential growth spurs debate
Hillsboro Cove deferred by planning commission
Posted on: 9/11/2013