Residents voice concerns about drainage, planned development

Published 12:00 pm Friday, February 26, 2016

Residents of a Lafayette County subdivision brought their concerns to the county planning commission this week when a developer came before the board seeking a preliminary subdivision plat.

There are several homes in Shelbi’s Place subdivision and about a dozen residents showed up at the meeting to voice their issues — mainly the lack of drainage.

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Many were frustrated because water creates ponds in their backyards and worried more homes will cause more drainage issues if Phase VI of the subdivision is allowed.

Paul Koshenina with Precision Engineering, which is representing Marquis Construction, assured the residents the developer is attempting to alleviate the standing water problems with new retention ponds and grading that will divert water into the streets and into the retention ponds.

“This should solve a lot of the drainage problems residents have been experiencing,” Koshenina said.

The developer, Lee Marquis, had intentions to divert the drainage away from the homes when the development was first constructed, but did not have access to the land for the diversion. He has since purchased the land, according to Koshenina, and the drainage issue should be solved.

The development, located just south of Oxford on Highway 7, began several years ago and originally had 171 lots, but the developer requested a reduction of 18 to 20 lots. The final phase would consist of 55 lots, averaging about a third of an acre, and bring the total number of lots to 152 in the subdivision.

Construction concerns

Residents also were concerned with large construction vehicles coming into their neighborhood and potentially tearing up the roadway while also posing a danger to children playing in the area.

Koshenina said a construction site road will be built alongside the retention ponds.

“They have a vested interest to continue to make it nice,” Koshenina said.

Residents also wanted assurance the new development would conform to their current subdivision standards.

“They will have the same covenants,” commission chairman TJ Ray told the audience, adding the homeowners association enforces that, not the county.

Ray also noted that when the development was first created, the county did not have a retention ordinance for drainage but has since adopted such an ordinance.

The final phase of the development cannot move forward until Marquis Construction receives final MDEQ approval.

In other matters:

• Approved a variance request, as well as preliminary and final site plan approval for two commercial lots in Phase III of Southpointe subdivision

• Gave commercial plat approval for a Centerpointe East Interconnect

• Allowed commercial approval for the replacement of a cell tower where MDOT is expanding on Highway 7 South. The new tower will be a free-standing tower.

• Approved Meramee Fireworks to operate its stand on County Road 106 during the July 4th holiday, as well as during Christmas and New Year holidays, on the condition limestone replaces a gravel entrance.

The commission recessed until 5:30 p.m. on March 15 when members will consider revised subdivision regulations that will be coming from a recently established committee.