City Commission Approves Zoning Amendments to Ox Bottom Development

City Commission Approves Zoning Amendments to Ox Bottom Development

On December 13, the Tallahassee City Commission approved the proposed amendment to the Ox Bottom Meadows Planned Unit Development (PUD) concept plan, which is located on 36.37 acres at the Northwest corner of Ox Bottom Road and Thomasville Road.

The amendments made to the existing PUD allow fast food and fueling stations as allowable uses in the Thomasville Road commercial areas, as well as multi-family residential with an additional 99 dwelling units to the interior residential components and a decrease in the frontage landscape buffer width on Thomasville Road from 35 to 20 feet.

Many residents of the Ox Bottom area attended the meeting to express their concern with how the amendments might affect the land of that area and its residents. One speaker who took issue with the proposed gas stations noted there was already plenty of gas station in the area. However, she noted the biggest concern she had for the fueling station amendment was the “risk to the heath and the safety of our neighborhood and our water system”. She continued to explain that this area of Thomasville road is its lowest point and “To put dangerous gas storage tanks at the low point of Thomasville Road seems reckless.”

Another speaker stated, “This project has not been handled correctly. We can’t undo the damage, but we can prevent it from becoming worse, which it will do if the rezoning is allowed.” She continued stating, “35 feet is nothing for a buffer, nothing at all. 20 feet is even less. Many of your family rooms are 20 feet wide.”

Staff addressed the concern raised by residents regarding the flood plains, stating, “FEMA may show right now that this fill area is in the flood plain. In reality, it’s no longer in that area.” Additionally, staff noted that before a permit was issued, a revised flood plain area and new maps would be submitted to FEMA. Lastly, staff assured there would be no development allowed in the flood plain.

Commissioners John Dailey, Dianne Williams-Cox and Curtis Richardson supported the proposed amendment, while Commissioners Jack Porter and Jeremy Matlow expressed their concern for the proposal. Mayor John Dailey noted, “No matter how you vote, whether you vote in favor or vote against, it’s a passionate issue and people are going to be upset.”

Commissioner Jack Porter expressed her concern stating, “I think we have a history with our neighbors being told one thing, and then the developers doing another.” She continued, “The bait and switch just has to stop.”

However, Commissioner Curtis Richardson said that while he understands peoples concern, “At the same time our City is growing and we’ve got to be prepared.” He also noted that it gives him comfort that in some instances the developer was willing to work with the neighbors and affected businesses.

The four amendments passed 3-2 with Commissioners Porter and Matlow dissenting.

6 Responses to "City Commission Approves Zoning Amendments to Ox Bottom Development"

  1. Ghazvini is the developer/owner of the property and has 300 LLCs who donate to the commissioners. Related? Of course. We need to investigate this and bring to light how these things are happening. This is just the beginning.

  2. News Maven,


    I believe “floodplain” is a significant enough issue for residents to be concerned? Also, with the horrendous development track record (putting special interests first) and the recent sewage spills where there is no accountability, and the special interests involved they will be causing another sewage blowout downstream.

    Until the city gives an accounting of the overall sewage situation, this should be tabled.

    Dailey, Williams-Cox, and Curtis put special interests ahead of the health, safety and welfare of the citizens. And that is a fact.

  3. It feels like Porter and Matlow are moreso contrarians than people acting in good faith. A 20 foot buffer between an underground gas tank and a flood plain is plenty if it has been plotted out correctly, built properly, and any abuse is minimized.

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