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SHALLOTTE—Developers of San Rio have asked the town board to table approval of their request for annexation and rezoning as well as an amendment to the master plan for Phase II.
The development company, Wakefield Coastal, is planning to scale back the project, said town administrator Paul Sabiston. They are seeking new agreements with the town to make sure the approval process goes smoothly, Sabiston said.
Approval or denial of the requests was supposed to be the reason for a recessed board of aldermen meeting Tuesday night at town hall, but the aldermen agreed to table the issue until their March 4 regular board meeting.
Sabiston said the developers want to amend the master plan again, possibly decreasing the number of units from 2,400 to 1,600.
“They’re talking about more single-family and less multi-family for the whole project,” Sabiston said. “It’s kind of a moving target.”
The developers of San Rio complained at the last board meeting that town staff told them the company would be required to pay for a regional sewer lift station to provide service to the San Rio project as well as other customers in the area. Wakefield agent Jim Wiseman called the issue a “curveball” and said that whenever the San Rio developers come to a meeting they are “told something different every time.”
Sabiston said he had met with Wiseman and others about the project, and they had agreed to it.
He said San Rio developers have been told from the start they would be required to build does a regional lift station and that they will be eligible for reimbursement for the part of it that not supply San Rio.
Sabiston said at the meeting the developers are now looking for a smaller development so they don’t have to build such a large lift station. Sabiston told the board Wakefield plans to build a 500,000-gallon-per-day lift station and use 350,000 for the development, rather than the 650,000-gallon-per-day station they would have been required to build for a development planned to use 500,000 gallons per day.
They are also trying to broker an infrastructure agreement and a development agreement with the town, Sabiston said, noting the infrastructure agreement could be completed in the next couple of weeks.
The development agreement, on the other hand, could take much longer, he said, but aldermen who attended the meeting said they wanted to make sure it was done right, this time.
Sabiston told the board he spoke to town attorney Laura Thompson, who said she is hesitant about rehashing the same issues that stopped the development agreement from going forward several months ago.
“She has hesitation in dropping her schedule to debate issues the board has specifically said they didn’t want,” Sabiston explained.
The aldermen asked Sabiston to bring to the Feb. 26 pre-agenda meeting a list of the “sticking points” that kept the development agreement from moving forward last time, so the board, which includes two new members elected in November, can understand what the issues are.
“There was a lot of overtime spent trying to get it done [the first time],” Alderman Buddy Kelly said during the meeting. “We need to take our time.”
Sabiston said he would also be in contact with the agents from San Rio about the issues they have with the agreement, but that might take until the March 4 meeting.
Two weeks ago, Wakefield’s parent company, Sandler at Shallotte, LLC, was fined $10,000 plus $835 in enforcement costs for installing sewer lines on the San Rio site without a permit.
The town of Shallotte received notice from state Division of Water Quality Feb. 8 stating the developers had “knowingly and willfully” decided to initiate construction of the sewer lines before the pending application was approved in October.