Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Annexation Accomodation

At Monday's City Council Meeting, the last with the sitting Council, members approved the annexation of two pieces of property on Forest Drive. The two pieces of property are the 6-acre Rodgers Property off Edgewood Road and the Katherine Property, a 179-acre horse farm. Given the Mayor's desire not to see an annexation moratorium and her friendly voting block on the council, the annexation moratorium was unlikely. To my mind, it wasn't the primary consideration anyway. What matters is not whether the land is in the City or the County, but how it's developed (or not).

So, the Council's adoption of a development moratorium on the two properties strikes me as precisely the right solution. The development moratorium requires that an adequacy of public facilities ordinance be in place before the properties can be developed.

The ordinance will surely include items such as water and sewer availability, roads, as well as school capacity. Council members must also be sure to include provisions covering emergency response times and the most contemporary methods for dealing with stormwater on-site.

Ultimately, it appears that the owners of the Rodgers property want to put townhouses on their site, and the owner of the Katherine property wants to set half the land aside as undeveloped, and turn the rest into a shopping center, senior community, and several estate homes. Let's hope the City can use these two recent annexations as proof that it can do development right.

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