By Nick Nunn staff writer
The members of the Morgan County Planning Commission voted to recommend approval of an application to have the property at 0 Pennington Road from the county’s Low Density Residential (R1) zoning to the city of Madison’s Estate Lot Residential (R) zoning. The owner of the property,
Hallie Duan of Cotton Ginnery, LLC, is asking that the property be annexed into the city of Madison, and the first action required for that process is to have a recommendation from the Planning Commission considering the proper zoning for the parcel in the city, if the parcel is annexed by the city. However, Planning Commission Chair Brian Lehman made it clear to the commission members that the annexation request itself would not be addressed by the commission, leaving the matter solely to the Madison City Council. “We’re not here to consider the annexation request,” said Lehman, adding that they are only there to recommend the “best zone for the parcel.” Madison Planner Mollie Bogle stated during the staff report that the R1 and R zoning requirements are nearly equivalent. She also recommended that any motion to approve the application include the condition that any portions of the property at 0 Pennington Road to be used to meet greenspace requirements for the property at 1080 Oil Mill Road, which Duan also owns, be joined to 1080 Oil Mill Road before a land disturbance permit is issued for the property. This condition was included in the commission’s motion to approve the application. Duan stated at the meeting that the parcel being considered for rezone will serve to provide greenspace for the property at 1080 Oil Mill Road if it is annexed into the city.
She said that she intends to pave a portion of the current parcel at 1080 Oil Mill road to be used as a parking lot and that the greenspace provided by the addition of the parcel under question will help her to meet the city’s pervious paving requirements. The Planning Commission also voted to recommend an application for a conditional use permit to erect a 199-foot telecommunications tower at 110 Jeff Cook Road, Mansfield.
The applicant, Verizon Wireless, intends to construct the tower to increase service for the area surrounding the Stanton Springs Industrial Park just outside of Morgan County’s borders. Chuck Jarrell, Morgan County planning director, stated in the staff report that the closest Verizon tower to the proposed location is 1.72 miles to the north, which is “too far north to provide the coverage needed along I-20 and at Baxter.” Commission Member Scott Campbell said that the proposed tower was “the best fit we’ve seen yet.”