by Aaron Burns

HUNTERSVILLE – The vote to allow the Villages of Mecklenburg assisted living subdivision will have to wait two more weeks.

The town board deferred the decision until Feb. 18 after town planner David Peete said the subdivision’s developers, Villages of Mecklenburg Assisted Living LLC, “wanted more time to solve concerns raised by citizens.”

The developers were not at the meeting to hear residents speak out against possible noise and traffic issues the subdivision could cause.

Villages of Mecklenburg would be located along the west side of Ranson Road, south of Stumptown Road. It’s slated to include a 100-bed, 75-room assisted living facility, a 60-room independent living unit and a skilled nursing facility.

“The number of people (who would be living) in this area is disproportionate to its size,” resident Shawn Garmon said. “This is going to create an issue for neighbors. There’s going to be traffic and noise at all times. This is not a 9-5 business. We will hear traffic and see lights on at all times.”

The board also revisited a discussion on lowering the number of planning board members from 11 to nine.

“Right now there are two vacancies on the board,” Commissioner Sarah McAulay said. “To reduce it, we have a lot of citizens who wish to serve the town. This is not the time to cut our (planning board) membership by two. Reducing it to nine by cutting members and having a quorum of five would not be a good way to conduct business.”

Commissioner Ron Julian agreed.

“I look to the planning board to review items,” he said. “I take that very seriously and I’d like to see it stay at 11.”

Commissioner Danny Phillips disagreed, speaking in favor of the reduction. He said the number of members wasn’t as important as how they handled their duties.

The board also:

• Approved Cambridge Properties’ request to rezone 1.16 acres to become part of Huntersville Market, and 1.04 acres to become a future part of the Olmstead subdivision as part of a land swap.

• Approved a revision to the Huntersville Market and Olmstead sketch plans.

• Approved Bowman Development’s proposal to allow drop-off and pick-up zones on town streets in Caldwell Station, Rosedale and Vermillion communities.

• Adopted a resolution to close a portion of Gibson Park Drive.