• August 23, 2014

Controversial Killeen zoning request tabled

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Posted: Tuesday, April 22, 2014 11:30 pm

A widely contested rezoning request that has appeared before the Killeen City Council several times was pulled from the agenda again Tuesday, per the developer’s request.

The request was to rezone 12.36 acres of land just west of Rein Drive in southern Killeen.

About a dozen residents were at the meeting ready to speak in opposition of developer Bruce Whitis’ request to rezone the tract from an agricultural single-family residential district to a suburban residential district.

Developer sent email

Tony McIlwain, city planner, said the city received an email from the developer to remove the item from the agenda to be brought forth again at a later date. The email did not give a reason for the developer wanting to have the item pulled.

The move to rezone the property would allow lots to be 6,000 square feet as opposed to 8,400 square feet, and it would reduce the minimum side yard setbacks from 10 feet to 7 feet.

Shelley Shelton, city senior planner, said of the 48 residents who live within a 200-foot radius of the proposed development, 13 opposed it. Because 20 percent of the residents opposed the rezoning, the issue would require three-quarters majority vote from the council to pass.

Linda Caines, a nearby resident, said in a letter to the city that she is “strongly opposed” to the proposed development.

“The rural atmosphere that we have enjoyed for 25-plus years will be destroyed,” she said “Property value will significantly decrease, not to mention traffic and (the) potential for crime to escalate.”

Linda Knotts, another nearby resident, said she is in opposition because the proposed lots are “too small” and the requested suburban residential district calls for “limited landscaping.”

However, the proposed development is in accordance with the city’s comprehensive plan, Shelton said during a council workshop meeting last week.

The item first appeared on a council agenda in March 2013 when the developer requested a change to the future land-use map and the rezoning of 62.31 acres.

The council disapproved the future land-use map portion of the request and tabled the rezoning component per the applicant’s request. The item was brought back before the council, at the request of the developer, in February.

The council heard the request to rezone the 62.31 acres from agriculture single-family residential to single-family residential. The council disapproved the request because it was inconsistent with the city’s future land use map.

McIlwain said residents will be notified via postcard when the item will appear on the agenda again.

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