Zoning changes lead packed council agenda

Xavier Smith • Updated Aug 16, 2016 at 8:00 AM

The Lebanon City Council will discuss zoning changes during Tuesday’s regular council meeting that have caused several residents discomfort over the last few weeks.

The council will discuss an amendment to the city’s major thoroughfare plan that spurred one resident to speak out against city leaders over the future of his property.

Rick Jones said a neighbor informed him the Lebanon Planning Commission would discuss a Maddox Simpson Parkway extension to add a frontage road spur along Sparta Pike during last month’s meeting.

Jones said the issue is the extensions would go right through his property that he has made clear he doesn’t plan on selling. Jones, whose home and property is on Sparta Pike near Uncle Pete's Truck Stop and Interstate 40, said city officials are pushing the issue.

However, city officials said the major thoroughfare plan (MTP) establishes recommendations for roadway improvements, offers a priority ranking for their implementation and provides facility guidelines for Lebanon’s transportation system based on functional classification. They also said adoption of a major thoroughfare plan amendment does not require any current property owner(s) to take any action.

“It’s about access and safety. I said add a frontage road spur to the plans so you could have access to the property aside from Sparta Pike. It may not happen in my lifetime. It’s just a conceptual idea,” Lebanon Public Works director Jeff Baines said.

“If I died tonight and TDOT wanted to purchase my farm and cut roads, money would be shifted. This farm has been in my family for almost a century and I don’t want it taken for gas stations and a Burger King,” Jones said.

The council will also discuss an amendment to the city’s future land use plan and rezoning of about 162 acres at 1501 Hunters Point Pike to high density residential zone.

Initial plans call for about 585 units approximately 1,400-1,900 square feet. Corder said the 585 units is a reduction from the 1,000-plus units that could have been approved under the previous land use plan. 

Many residents also pointed to flooding and traffic issues on Highway 231 as reasons for their opposition. Some also voiced concerns about reduction in home values and the potential of the subdivision.

The council will also discuss a development on Leeville Pike after developers met with concerned residents last week.

The council deferred action on the development after the Lebanon Planning Commission approved to rezone about 20 acres on Leeville Pike to medium-density residential from rural residential agriculture. The development would be among agricultural zoning and borders a Century Farm. The rezoning would allow 4.8 units per acre.

Wayne Baker, Fleming Homes chief operating officer, said the development would feature about 60 single, free-standing residences that are four-sided brick. He said there would be approximately 3.25 homes per acre. The homes would be valued at around $300,000.

Many residents discussed existing problems with water pressure in the area, dangers of commuters on Leeville Pike and previous broken promises of other businesses on the road.

The council will also discuss a land use plan amendment, rezoning and plan of services for the future Lebanon-Wilson County industrial park.

The property is between Cainsville Road and Sparta Pike, south of Interstate 40. The land, which has TVA lines running through it and railroad tracks beside it, is prime area for advanced manufacturing jobs, according to Lebanon Mayor Philip Craighead.

“A lot of people are looking to come and move to Tennessee for their operations. This particular site is one of those sites that’s so unique that we have people already looking at it. We’re not sure what it is, but we’ll vet them and make sure it’s a good fit for Lebanon,” he said. “When you have the sewer, gas, water, interstate and the railroad – and the rail is a big thing here – it makes it one of those properties that can make a big chance for our community, especially the east side of town.”

Craighead said the development could possibly relieve sewer issues in the area due to the possibility of moving connections, along with the possibility of exits being primarily on Sparta Pike. He said the city has also been in talks with the Tennessee Department of Transportation about improvements to the road.

The council will hold a 5 p.m. work session to discuss Planning Department items, Federal Family Medical Leave Act policy and a fire truck purchase. The council will also hold a 5:55 p.m. public hearing for several items, including the potential 1501 Hunters Point Pike changes. 

Recommended for You

    Lebanon Democrat Videos