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The Lake News Online
  • “Green” community still has time

  • The extension of a planned unit development (PUD) in Shawnee Bend has been upheld after an appeal of the Camden County Planning Commission's April 2013 decision by the Shawnee Bend 3 Homeowners Association.
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  • The extension of a planned unit development (PUD) in Shawnee Bend has been upheld after an appeal of the Camden County Planning Commission's April 2013 decision by the Shawnee Bend 3 Homeowners Association.
    The homeowners association appealed the second one-year extension of a two-year PUD after also taking developer Gary Storm to court and losing on an objection to commercial zoning within the proposed "green" Woodland Community.
    While Storm retained the PUD at least through March 2014, the area plan of the mixed use development changed considerably during the process of case heard by the Camden County Board of Adjustment.
    A revised area plan with additional conditions was approved by the BOA after voting unanimously to deny the appeal Wednesday afternoon.
    The plan now meets the covenant restrictions that the HOA had in effect from 1999-2010 which did not allow any multi-family or commercial use within 1,000 feet of the shoreline.
    The plan no longer contains the row houses that were previously a centerpiece of the project. There will, however, be one apartment over each community garage building in the plan to be used as artists' lofts. All other housing will be traditional single-family construction utilizing environmentally-friendly construction materials and smaller lot sizes.
    The commercial park area that Storm planned to use as a community garden and cultural center has also been moved away from the lake and closer to Spruce Road. Additional single family housing was then shifted closer to the lake in the former commercial park space.
    At Storm's request, the underlying rezoning that must take place to allow for the switch will be delayed until the first plat of the PUD is filed. The final plat of the first phase of the PUD must be filed by March 2014, or Storm must apply for another one year extension.
    The developer asked the BOA to extend that deadline by a year from the Nov. 20 meeting to give him more time after being delayed by all the challenges to the PUD from the HOA as well as the difficulty in getting financing for new development right now.
    The board indicated that the planning commission would hear the extension request if necessary in April.
    The filing of the first plat initiates construction and locks in a PUD.
    If the PUD is dissolved at any time, the land use would revert to the underlying zoning in existence prior to the issuance of the PUD. That would largely include single family zoning and about five acres of general commercial on Spruce Rd.
    HOA member Robert Wilcox told the BOA that the new area plan was something that he and several other HOA members could live with though they weren't thrilled about the P2 commercial park area.
    Page 2 of 2 - He later said that the plan has also changed significantly since its origins in 2010 when some low income housing was proposed at the site.
    "We just want to protect our property values," Wilcox said.
    The HOA will also maintain its covenant power to approve the architectural style of the buildings within the PUD, he and other residents stated after the meeting.
    BOA chair Chris Cisar commented that the two sides had come a long way since October in order to come to terms that were acceptable to both sides.
    "Now we'd like to see a really nice development," she said.
    Not all parties were happy however.
    HOA member Charles Ray advised the BOA prior to the votes that the plan was not acceptable in his eyes and likely not for some other Shawnee Bend 3 residents.
    He stated that commercial was not allowed by the HOA covenants and should never be allowed in the subdivision.
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