New subdivision sought off Union

Farragut Municipal Planning Commission is considering a request to rezone the former Ivey Farm off Union Road for a residential development.

While no action was taken during its meeting Thursday, May 18, FMPC heard from David Robinette, engineer with the applicant, Site Inc., who asked five parcels [formerly the Ivey farm] be rezoned from Agriculture to Residential-1 Open Space Ratio.

Robinette said plans are to build a subdivision in four phases with about 250 lots.

Saddle Ridge resident Warren Shill asked FMPC to consider zoning the Ivey property R-2, similar to his subdivision and Fox Run subdivision, which both abut the Ivey property.

“I’m assuming the density for R-1 OSR will have smaller lots, as I understand about 14,000 square feet on the average,” Shill said. “The homes will have a larger footprint on the area of their lots and cluster housing among other things.”

Mark Shipley, Community Development director, said R-1 OSR has been a popular zoning district because it allows flexibility for the developer and, if designed properly, gives adjacent properties more protection than traditional R-2 or R-1 zoning districts.

“I think the R-1 OSR is the most appropriate zoning, given all the space requirements and peripheral setbacks that would be required,” Commissioner Noah Myers said.

Another concern was the timing of the project in regard to the Town’s receiving a federal grant that would pay 80 percent of the costs to improve Union Road.

“I’m concerned about our funding for the road and don’t want to do anything that can jeopardize that,” FMPC chairwoman Rita Holladay said. “That’s a large chunk of the project for the Town.”

Robinette said he would be willing to help pay costs of improving Union Road. Still, Holladay said she wanted to make sure that cost sharing would not jeopardize the grant.

“I would definitely want more information on what it does to the grant before we get too much further with this [project],” she said.

Robinette said he has researched the funding and was told the project would not affect the grant’s status “as long as his firm is enhancing it and not doing anything detrimental that would cost you more money down the road.”

Commissioner Edward St. Clair said he also would like to get a better idea of what Robinette is talking about relative to the project and the grant.

“I am intrigued with the opportunity to have the developer participate in the Town’s 20 percent of the cost of the road construction, as well as the right-of-way acquisition,” Myers said. “Anytime we can get a private party to ante up and help us cover that 20-percent cost is significant.

“If we partner prior to this [road construction], we will have the right of way,” he added. “If we wait, we’ll have to purchase that right of way from the Ivey family.”

However, Myers said he is concerned a majority of the vehicles will go east, not west.

“We need to be realistic about this. I think these are things we want further discussion on.”