Deni McIntyre

 Preserve Crab Creek

 

The STORAGE FACILITY

On July 28, county officials will meet to decide whether to permit a giant storage facility in the heart of Crab Creek.   Here's why they should say no.

 

DESTROYS RURAL CHARACTER 

A storage facility as large as a big-box retail store is wildly out of place on Crab Creek Road.  It opens the door to more intensive development on this spot, and also to more strip commercial development along our road.  Strip commercial in rural areas is exactly what the county’s Comprehensive Plan tries to prevent.  The county is supposed to grant this permit only if it’s “in accordance with the Comprehensive Plan.”  Let’s hold the county to this requirement. 

DEVALUES NEARBY PROPERTY  

As strip development invites noise, lights, traffic, car exhaust, and crime into the countryside, the value of residential properties can drop.  Many of us have invested heavily in our rural paradise.  The county is supposed to grant this permit only if it doesn’t “substantially injure the value of property or improvements in the area.”  Let’s make sure the county understands this responsibility.

THREATENS CLEAN WATER 

The proposed storage facility includes more than seven acres of “hardscape” — roofs, pavement, and bits of manicured lawn — alongside Mud Creek, which feeds the French Broad River.  Hardscape causes polluted storm water to drain directly into nearby waterways, rather than seeping into the ground, which filters it naturally.  The county is supposed to grant this permit only if it “minimize[s] the environmental impacts on the neighborhood.”  Let’s make sure this happens.

COMPROMISES PUBLIC SAFETY 

Finally, community members are gathering data on several public safety concerns.  One relates to traffic flow:  the proposed storage facility is on a blind curve that's caused some serious accidents.   Another concern relates to the food garbage and flammable chemicals that people store in such facilities, and the vermin these facilities attract.  A third concern relates to crime.  Storage facilities can become meth labs, which are typically discovered when they explode.  In considering this permit, county officials need to protect public safety.  Let's make sure they do.

LEARN MORE about the rules that govern the county’s decision on a “special use permit” for this storage facility, see Article XI (Review Processes and Procedures), Section 42-356(H)(1).