Atlantic Self Storage expansion denied by commission

275-ATLANTIC-SELF-STORAGEWith City Commissioner Todd Neville leaving the meeting because of a declared conflict of interest, Mayor Shaver and the remaining commissioners reached a unanimous quasi-judicial decision; confirming denial of a use by exception to develop a mini-warehouse at the intersection of SR-A1A and SR-312.

David Birchim, Planning and Building Director for the city, introduced the history of the application, denied on February 2nd by the city’s Planning and Zoning Board.

Ellen Avery-Smith, an attorney with Rogers-Towers, appeared for the limited liability company that owns Atlantic Self Storage, the property, and who is making the request for a use by exception.

This property is part of the existing Atlantic Self Storage facility and would have allowed construction of a three (3) story, 78,000 square foot, climatized self-storage building in the vacant “outparcel” at 1865 SR-AlA South, a property located at the northwest corner of SR-AlA South and SR-312.

The existing mini-warehouse business was approved by the City Commission, on appeal, on June 2, 1999.  On December 11, 2014, the property owner applied to rezone the entire property, including the existing Atlantic Self Storage site and the undeveloped outparcel, and the PZB reviewed this application on January 6, 2015, February 3, 2015, and March 3, 2015.

On March 3, 2015, the PZB continued this application (to an uncertain date) in order to allow the process of updating the code to include “self-storage warehouses” that would be applied city wide. The PZB worked on this code amendment throughout the remaining year (2015).

The code update for defining self-storage warehouse businesses, parking requirements and inclusion in certain zoning districts was approved on January 25, 2016 by Ordinance 2016-02.

Prior to the adoption of this ordinance, on December 11, 2015, the property owner applied for a use by exception to allow a mini-warehouse development on the outparcel and this application was modified to include tree removal in Conservation Zone three for the development. This PZB application was continued at the January 5, 2016 PZB meeting and denied at the February 2, 2016 PZB meeting.

On February 17, 2016, an appeal was filed seeking to overturn the PZB denial of this development.  Legal sufficiency for this appeal was determined on March 14, 2016.

The mayor and commissioners listened to 20-minutes of argument by Avery-Smith and several comments from the public.

The standard of review for a quasi-judicial decision requires all of the following:

a)  procedural due process was afforded to the applicant,
b)  the Planning and Zoning Board applied the correct law, and
c)  the decision was supported by competent, substantial evidence in the record.

Commissioner Nancy Sikes-Kline made the motion to deny the appeal and confirm the Planning and Zoning order denying the permit.  The motion was seconded by vice-mayor Horvath and, on voice vote, made final on a 4-0 vote.

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