A variety of public hearings at next week’s city commission meeting highlight the city’s focus on prepared and planned growth.
A handful of public hearings will be held next Monday at the city commission meeting, including one that will potentially create a new future land use category in response to the city’s projected growth.
The population of Plant City is growing at an exponential rate and the Imagine 2040: Plant City Comprehensive Plan projects that by its horizon year there will be more than 70,000 people calling the municipality home.
As the growth continues, there is a need to create a larger swath of future land use plan categories “to implement the vision and development pattern desired by the residents of Plant City,” according to the city.
Currently Plant City has just over half of the future land use plan categories available for consideration as the City of Tampa. Planning Commission staff has developed several new categories over the years, including Light Commercial/Office and Mixed-Use Gateway and Residential-9 — which filled the gap between Residential-6 and Residential-12 since they were the maximum allowable densities at the time — and now they are prepared to present another category.
The City of Plant City requested Planning Commission staff develop another residential land use plan category to fill another gap. Right now we have Residential-12 and Residential-20. Obviously that’s a massive difference in density so the new category, Residential-16, is being floated that would allow for densities of up to 16 dwelling units per gross acre. A report from the city said that staff is “currently unaware of any proposed developments that would be seeking such a density threshold in the City of Plant City.”
The proposed text for the new future land use plan category says the developments, ““…should offer safe, quiet and attractive environments for people to live. In exchange for less personal space, the area should offer benefits such as more immediate accessibility to work and shopping areas…”
The housing allowed would typically include townhouses or multi-family dwellings, although single-family attached and detached homes are allowed. There are a variety of development parameters included with this proposed category that are very similar to what is currently allowed in Residential-20.
The transmittal public hearing on the proposed new category will be Aug. 23 at City Hall. The commission meeting begins at 7:30 p.m.
Two other public hearings will be regarding a site located west of N. Wilder Road, north of E. Sam Allen Road and south of S. Wilder Loop that is approximately 0.94 acres. As a result of annexation this property is located in the northeast quadrant of Plant City. In the first public hearing, the applicant has requested to change its future land use designation for the land from Hillsborough County Residential-1 to Plant City Residential-6.
According to the city, “a couple of major factors supporting this proposed amendment are:
1) Provides for the same future land use designation and density of adjacent parcels to the north, west and south of PC/CPA 21-01.
2) Eliminates an isolated pocket of land in unincorporated Hillsborough County, thus promoting efficient service delivery, compact growth and the orderly expansion of the municipal boundaries of Plant City.”
The property is located north of the interchange of North Park Road and I-4, which is identified as a major commercial activity center for Plant City. Around that center a variety of densities are envisioned for residential developments as they annex into the City of Plant City. The preferred land use as is identified in the Northeast Plant City Area Master Plan has a designation of Residential-4.
Planning commission staff analyzed the proposal since the request is not for an R-4, but for an R-6. The public hearing will be held on Aug. 23.
Following that is a public hearing on an ordinance to rezone that same 0.94 acres on N. Wilder Road and a “major modification and specific approvals to the North Park Isle Planned Development District.”
This would take its rezoning from Agricultural Single Family-1 to Planned Development district (North Park Isle PD). It’s being incorporated into NPI for single-family development. By adding this small site it could potentially add five units within that area. However, the rezoning and PD modification proposes to add Village 6 but does not request additional dwelling units, only to transfer dwelling units between Village 5 into Village 6.”
Essentially this would increase the total acreage of NPI from 718 to 719 acres and they would retain the previously approved number of dwellings units at 2,600. This is broken down to 2,350 single-family and 250 townhomes.
The specific approvals they are requesting for Village 6 simply mimic the approvals they received for Village 5, which includes topics like relief from a section to allow a reduced side-yard setback of five feet, relief from a section to permit up to 30 percent of the lots to be 50 feet wide and relief from a section permitting driveways accessing local roads to be spaced five feet from the edge of the property line.