CARRBORO – The Carrboro Board of Aldermen did not vote to approve the Conditional Use Permit, or C.U.P., for Shelton Station Thursday night, instead choosing to recess the public hearing while the developer and town staff fine-tune the plan.

Here’s appraiser Rich Kirkland speaking in support of the developer.

“Recently, I’ve done a new project proposed for Hillsborough Street in Raleigh that is going do a very similar thing: with a property that is going to join residential units to the back,” Kirkland says. “Anticipation for that project is it is going to help the whole area—the added retail there is going to serve the homes nearby.”

The recessed public hearing is currently scheduled to resume April 2, which is the Board’s next scheduled meeting.

The current plan for Shelton Station is for two residential units and two vacant lots totaling 2.6 acres to be converted into a mixed-use development. with 94 residential units and 119,000 square-feet of commercial space to be located just off of N. Greensboro Street near Shelton and Parker Streets. The proposal also received the LEED silver equivalent standard.

After much discussion, the Board had five recommendations for the Shelton Station developers to modify the proposal with assistance from town staff. They included how to manage the construction issues at the site, specific details about the affordable housing allotment, the potential for a solar panel on the roof and access to compost.

But town attorney Michael Brough says the details on the payment-in-lieu provision in the Town’s Land Use Ordinance for urban amenities leaves room for discussion.

“There is language in there that they have to spend money on the site, unless the Board concludes that it’s not practical to do so. Then they can make a payment-in-lieu,” says Brough. “There is some discretion, but obviously the ordinance is expressing a preference for the expenditure on site.”

The developers are currently planning an artistic play structure to fulfill the requirement, but have to expand the structure or pay the town the monetary difference to satisfy that section of the ordinance.

Although much of the meeting was discussion between the board and the developers, there was time allotted for public comment.

Arne Grey co-owns several lots near the proposed site with his wife. He says the plan does not fit in that part of town.

“It’s not part of Carrboro’s nature—it’s not moderate,” says Grey. “It’s not for people with moderate incomes or interests. It is a different sort of structure, therefore I object to it. It doesn’t fit and it’s not appropriate.”

The board and other local residents had some concern about the scope of the project being too extravagant for the area, but PTA Thrift Shop Executive Director Barbara Jessie-Black says the development will bring needed pedestrians to Carrboro.

“As a large retailer in downtown Carrboro, we appreciate that this particular project is going to bring more foot traffic,” says Jessie-Black. “With our redevelopment in-process, once we get our building up and running, we hope that we get more customers. This project would help us do that.”

The Board narrowly approved the re-zoning of the land for the project in January of last year by a 4-3 margin, which allowed a project of this magnitude to be proposed.