MARVIN – Residents in Marvin will have another chance to ask questions about a large commercial project proposed for the corner of Rea and Tom Short roads at a public information meeting on Thursday night, July 10.
The 245,000-square-foot project would include a movie theater, grocery store, restaurants, general retail and other service-type businesses, in addition to one passive park area and one pocket park that would likely include activities for children and families, Ken Orndorff with developer Raley Miller Properties said. Raley Miller Properties is looking for the property to be annexed into Marvin and rezoned to allow for the project. The property currently is commercially zoned in unincorporated Union County.
This will be the second and final public information meeting in regard to the project, which the planning board is tentatively scheduled to discuss in mid-August. The meeting will take place from 6 to 8 p.m. at Banks Presbyterian Fellowship Hall, 10012 New Town Road.
“It’s more of a question-and-answer-type meeting,” Marvin Administrator and Senior Planner Lisa Thompson said. “(We want residents) to provide feedback to the developer and to (town staff) to see what kind of changes we can make.”
Raley Miller Properties has made a number of changes to the property since initial conversations with the town and after hearing concerns from town staff and residents. The project was originally proposed at 300,000 square feet, but the developers have since removed one building, lowered the maximum size for the grocery store tenant, increased green space and enhanced buffering around the project, Orndorff said, leaving more space between the project and surrounding residential developments.
“We’ve done a lot of enhancements to the project,” he added.
Residents also raised concerns about traffic the project could bring to New Town Road, Marvin Planner and Zoning Administrator Donna Cook said.
“There are always concerns from residents,” Orndorff said. “They fear increased traffic. They fear loss of undeveloped land. There are a lot of things people fear, but I’m not sure that this project contributes to those in a meaningful way.”
Raley Miller Properties could develop the land in line with its current unincorporated Union County zoning if the property is not annexed by Marvin and rezoned under the town’s unified development ordinance for mixed-use commercial development. The developer hopes to not have to move in that direction.
“We felt that Union County ordinances were not truly conducive to a project that would provide high quality restaurants, retail and service components,” Orndorff said.
Another main concern Orndorff has heard from residents, he said, is the possibility of a large box store like Walmart making its way into Marvin, something he said will not happen in the Raley Miller Properties project.
Marvin Village Council will host a public hearing at a later date, following the planning board’s August meeting and prior to making any final decisions on the project. No date or time has been set at this point.
People can see site plans and other information regarding the project at www.marvinnc.org.