The Marble Falls City Council voted to rezone and grant conditional use permits for the construction of multi-unit condominiums on two lots in the Mormon Mill area during its meeting Tuesday, April 20. The vote follows a series of discussions between residents and housing developers to design a buffer between the single-family properties next door to the proposed development.
Neighboring property owners expressed opposition to the project, voicing concerns about the proximity of units at the council’s April 6 meeting. Also, at that meeting, the council watched — and expressed support of — plans for the multi-family housing development on lots 1 and 35-A in Holly-Naumann Subdivision No. 3. Due to opposition, however, councilors requested a continuation of the public hearing to provide time for the developers and neighboring property owners to discuss how to mitigate their concerns.
On April 16, Vincent Huebinger, property developer and owner of Vincent Gerard & Associates, met with four property owners and councilors Celia Merrill and Dave Rhodes to develop designs for a buffer that would include a 6-foot-high wooden fence, Leyland cypress trees, and pre-existing vegetation.
In addition to the buffer, developers also agreed to avoid adding large street lights to the property and instead adopt smaller lamp posts into the design.
“(Property owners) wanted some kind of protection from the possible traffic, noise, and activity that would be going on in the condominiums,” City Planner Scarlet Moreno said during the April 20 meeting.
As stated in the permits, the developer must also provide a maintenance plan for the buffer before receiving a Certificate of Occupancy for the project.
None of the residents who participated in the design meeting attended the April 20 council meeting.
William “Dee” Haddock, a Planning and Zoning commissioner and Marble Falls resident, asked that the motion include specific language to ensure the proposed driveway running through the property is only accessible by development residents, another concern of neighbors.
“The only thing I wanted to make sure is that we are specific on the issue of the gates,” Haddock said. “I don’t want it just gated so that it’s open during the daytime. I want it gated and accessible only by the residents so that it does not become a thoroughfare.”
A reworded motion granting the rezoning and permits was approved 5-1 with Councilor Rene Rosales opposing. Councilor Reed Norman excused himself from the vote to avoid conflict of interest because of the proximity of his home to the project.
Developers may now begin the next steps in the construction project since conditional-use permits are effective immediately.