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Local Government Update, November 2019

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Fairhope Planning Commission Meeting - November 4, 2019

Drainage Concerns Dominate Discussion of Gayfer Road Development

The Fairhope Planning Commission heard a Multiple Occupancy Request for a proposed 20-unit development on the north side of Gayfer Road Ext., just west of Bishop Rd.   There was extensive discussion about drainage and stormwater management plans for the property, which is known to hold water.  Ultimately, the Multiple Occupancy Permit was approved.  Since the development is un-zoned in Baldwin County, it also had to go before the Baldwin County Planning Commission for Final Site Plan Approval, which was granted at their November meeting.


Orange Beach City Council Meeting – November 5, 2019

Setback Variance Approved for Elevator

The Orange Beach City Council approved a variance to the 10’ side setback for a home located on Martinique Dr., in Terry Cove Harbor.  The owners requested the variance to install an enclosed elevator on the west side of the home.  The elevator installation will result in a 6’ encroachment. 


Baldwin County Planning Commission Meeting – November 7, 2019

Site Plan Approved for RV Park Near Elberta

The Baldwin County Planning Commission approved the site plan for a 36-unit RV Park.  The 10.93-acre parcel is located on the north side of Hwy. 98 on the west side of County Road 91 in Elberta. 

Variance Request Denied for Mockingbird Hill – Phase II

The Baldwin County Planning Commission voted to deny a requested variance from the County Subdivision Regulations pertaining to lot size, water and sewer requirements and curb and gutters.  The property is located on the east side of Deer Acres Lane, approximately .4 miles south of Hwy. 98, and is part of Mockingbird Hill – Unit Phase Two near Elberta.  The preliminary plat for the subdivision was submitted in 1997 for 37 proposed lots, but only 17 lots were completed.  Now, developers were asking to develop the remaining 20 lots to match the original layout with a congruent look.  However, the County Subdivision Regulations have since changed.  The denial of the variance means any current development will have to meet current standards.

Bella Serra Gardens Request to Short-Term Rent is Denied

The Bella Serra Gardens venue in Loxley petitioned the Baldwin County Planning Commission for a conditional use permit to allow the short-term rental of the private dwelling located on the property.  The request is the fifth conditional use application in the history of the property. Prior applications included changing operational hours, allowing for additional events, construction of a chapel, etc.  The County zoning ordinance does not regulate rentals, but in this case, it altered the previous conditional use approvals.  The Planning Commission ruled that the rental of the dwelling was inconsistent with conditions which were established with the original and subsequent conditional use approvals.   Continuing complaints from neighboring property owners also contributed to the denial.

County Planning Commission Denies Recommendation for Commercial Re-Zonings

Two re-zoning applications seeking a commercial re-zoning were given denial recommendations by the Baldwin County Planning Commission.  The recommendations will go to the County Commission for a final vote.   The denial recommendations include a request to re-zone 17 acres from RSF-E to B-2 for office/commercial use. The property is located on the east side of County Rd. 13, north of Pleasant Rd. in the Daphne area.   The second denial recommendation was for a request to re-zone 2 acres from B-2 to B-3 for a gas station convenience store.  That property is located on the south side of Hwy. 98, north of County Rd. 99, in the Lillian area.

Plans Re-Submitted for Savannah Estates Subdivision

Plans for a large residential subdivision located northeast of the intersection of County Roads 54 and 64, were back before the Baldwin County Planning Commission for re-zoning.  A previous re-zoning application for the property was recommended for approval by the Planning Commission in June, but developers withdrew the application prior to consideration by the County Commission.  The revised application proposes 327 lots on 148 acres.  This is a decrease from the prior application by 65 lots and approx. 26 acres.   The Planning Commission voted again for a favorable recommendation.  The application will now proceed to the County Commission for final re-zoning approval.  And, due to the property being in the Daphne Extra Territorial Jurisdiction, it will also go before the Daphne Planning Commission for subdivision review.


Orange Beach Planning Commission Meeting – November 13, 2019

Property Division Approved for Land on Mississippi Ave.

The Orange Beach Planning Commission approved a request from Amy Bowen for the preliminary and final minor subdivision to subdivide 10.63 acres into 8 lots.  The property is located at 5362 Mississippi Ave., in the single-family residential zoning district.  There are currently no construction plans being proposed at this time.

Tom Thumb at The Wharf Seeks PUD Modification

The Orange Beach Planning Commission recommended approval to the Council for modifications to the Wharf Planned Unit Development Master Plan.  The changes involve adding a Tom Thumb Convenience Store on 3.94 acres at the northeast corner of the intersection of Canal Road and Wharf Parkway East.  The plans include a gas station, food store, fast food restaurant, and car wash.  The location is expected to have a right-in, right-out entrance and exit on Canal Rd.

Site Plan for Proposed Sweat Tire Receives Denial

The entrance roadway design was the sticking point that led the Orange Beach Planning Commission to deny a site plan request from Sweat Tire.  The business sought to construct a 4,960 square foot building for a tire store on property located at the southeast corner of the intersection of Canal Road and Cypress St.   The city was wanting the developer to upgrade the entrance roadway on Cypress St. to at least three lanes to accommodate traffic.  The developer countered with shifting the drive entrance to the south, with no improvements to the existing roadway.  The developer suggested that any traffic impact from the tire business was negligible, and that the traffic problems stemmed from a nearby Church.  The Planning Commission disagreed, and denied the site plan due to public safety issues from the traffic impact.          

Doc’s Steakhouse Requests Parking Addition

The Orange Beach Planning Commission gave approval for the site plan and minor subdivision to combine and re-subdivide lots located at 24421 Perdido Beach Blvd. at the northeast corner of the intersection of Perdido Beach Blvd. and Slipper Blvd.  The changes will allow for a parking addition for Doc’s Seafood & Steaks Restaurant located on the adjacent property to the north.  A total of 141 parking spaces will be developed using Slipper Blvd. to the west for a driveway.


Gulf Shores Planning Commission Meeting – November 19, 2019

One Club Seeking to Expand Uses

The Gulf Shores Planning Commission voted to approve a request to amend the One Club PUD Master Plan.  The changes include adding a golf driving cage/driving range, a coffee shop with retail space, and modifications to the pool areas.   Adjustments were made to the hours of operation for the facilities due to concerns expressed by residents over noise.    


Fairhope City Council Meeting – November 25, 2019

Council Continues Live Oak Estates Zoning Application; Wants Fewer Lots

The Fairhope City Council debated the zoning change request from RA to PUD for a 38-acre parcel located at the southwest corner of Bay Meadow Ave. and Hwy. 181.  The proposed development has raised the concern of neighboring residents who have spoken out against the zoning change.  Developers have already re-designed the subdivision plans from the original request at the planning commission level.  However, the neighbors and council members still had issues with the development plans.  Those plans include a 99-lot single family subdivision to be named Live Oak Estates.  There would also be a 4.3-acre commercial parcel that would front Hwy. 181.  Residential lots would range between 52’ and 75’ wide.  The small lot size, high density, and unknown use for the commercial parcel were all factors in the council’s displeasure with the proposal.   The council made a distinction between this already zoned property and other surrounding neighborhoods which began as un-zoned land.  Since, this property already fell under zoning, the council had greater authority in demanding a development that was in line with city standards.  As a result, the council voted to continue the request and suggested the developer reduce the density, while maintaining the same amount of greenspace before bringing the application back for a vote.

Major Fairhope Development Receives Council Approval for PUD and Annexation

The Fairhope City Council voted to approve the PUD and annexation request from Gayfer Village Partners for property commonly known as the Klump PUD.  The approx. 76-acre property is located at the northwest corner of Fairhope Ave. and Hwy. 181.  The property was previously un-zoned in the County.  Development plans include 16 commercial lots, 232 apartment units, and 67 single family homes.  The development will come back before the planning commission and council for multiple occupancy permit (MOP) and site plan approvals in the future, as plans progress.