City considers rezoning for new shopping center

Apr. 17, 2013 @ 05:00 AM

City Council held several public hearings during its Tuesday meeting, including one involving a proposed shopping center near the Southside Plaza Shopping Center.

Daniel Brown of MacGregor Square, a real estate development company, is requesting a vacant 17-acre tract of land next to the southeast side of Southside Plaza Shopping Center be rezoned from office and institutional to general commercial. According to the application, the reason for rezoning the property is "to develop a retail shopping center."

The shopping center, Brown said during the public hearing, would consist of one big-box store and other smaller parcels.

"In our opinion, we feel it will be a huge plus for the area," Brown said. "We feel this is the last main opportunity to bring national quality, we call them tenants, but you call them places to shop in this community."

Sanford Area Chamber of Commerce President Bob Joyce said during the public comment he and the Chamber were in favor of this shopping center.

"If we are to maintain our position as a retail hub and attract those people to come here and shop, we need this type of development," Joyce said. 

Joyce and Brown declined to say what stores would move to the shopping center.

No one spoke against the proposed shopping center and council took no action on the public hearing. The council will vote on the rezoning application after the Sanford-Lee County Planning Board makes its recommendation.

In other matters, council also considered the following public hearings:

* An application by James Tucker to rezone approximately 2.5 acres of land at the intersection of Tramway and St. Andrews Church roads from residential single-family zoning district to general commercial. According to his application, Tucker would like to relocate the existing mobile homes located on the property within the Dreamland Mobile Home Park and relocate the existing single-family dwelling to another area for future commercial development. No one spoke against the project.

* An application by the Sanford Soup Kitchen Inc. to rezone less than an acre from the residential-mixed zoning district to general commercial to replace an existing freezer unit at the rear of the property and add a carport shelter at the Bread Basket, located 140 E. Chisholm St. No one spoke against the project.

* The closeout documents for the 2009 Maple Avenue Community Revitalization Community Development Block Grant and 2010 Autumn Oaks Housing Development Community Development Block Grant. Council authorized Sanford Mayor Cornelia Olive to execute both closeout documents.