Promenade Subdivision called to action again
By Karen Daniels
At the July 17th Stafford City Council meeting, the property at US 90-A and Promenade Blvd. that had recently been at the center of a contentious debate, was back on the agenda to discuss the replatting of this land. The week prior, the P&Z Commission unanimously recommended the plans submitted to divide the 15.43 acres into three separate reserves. Art Pertile, City Attorney, explained prior to opening the public hearing that this discussion was only about the consideration of the division of the property, not about rezoning. Charles Russell, City Engineer, confirmed that the replatting presented to Council (2nd version) did meet the required subdivision ordinances. There was some confusion among community members who attended the meeting. Many thought this matter had already been decided at the May 21st meeting. When the owner, Martin Bronstein, approached City Council, he didn’t elaborate about the property and said that he would speak to individuals who wanted more information about the intended usage, outside of council chambers. Five Promenade residents spoke ardently about not wanting light industrial in their neighborhood and the importance of community. The public hearing lasted for almost one hour. A motion to approve the division of the property passed unanimously. Council announced that a re-zoning request for some of the land had been submitted to the City, but no specific details were given. Outside, Mr. Bronstein said, “We listened at the last meeting and figured out a way to make it work.” Of the three reserves, there is proposal to sell 8 acres (back portion of Hwy 90) to Westin Homes. The frontage on US Hwy 90A will remain commercial. Currently, a “national fast-food restaurant” is in consideration. Mr. Bronstein called the new arrangement “a feasible compromise between the commercial and residential needs of the community.” This information was well received by the group of residents that gathered. However, this change in zoning to allow Westin Homes to build will not be accomplished without the continued support from the residents of Promenade and the citizens of Stafford. The existing zoning regulations on the primary corridor have been in place since 1997. The residents are united in that they want the land to be rezoned for more homes, but for the City with no property taxes, rezoning from commercial to residential will take money out of the City’s pocket. There will be much discussion from City Council on this topic and community members will need to remain vigilant and patient. The application for rezoning will first be heard by the P&Z Commission on Tuesday, August 12, at 7:30pm, and then by Stafford City Council on Wednesday, August 20, at 7:00pm. The Mayor and City Council encourage the community to attend.
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