The Planning Commission on Monday went along with a request from developer James Pratt to overturn a downzoning by the City Council at The Quarry.
Mr. Pratt plans to put a development at the former golf course on Read's Lake Road, but neighbors are fiercely opposed. The council in April went along with a request by Councilman Chip Henderson to place new conditions in C-2 on the Quarry land that downzoned the property against the owner's wishes.
The developer noted that the city 16 years ago had changed about 600 tracts to C-2. He said, "To go back to the zoning from 16 years ago, that's crazy."
Saying the city "over-reached, he added, "This is improper, illegal and just not right."
At the time, Councilman Henderson said he did not know if the downzoning was legal. However, City Attorney Phil Noblett defended it on Monday, saying the law "does allow the imposing of conditions for the benefit of the public."
Planning Commission Chairman Ethan Collier said he had some concerns that the case "might set a chain reaction on the 599 other tracts."
Mr. Pratt had earlier withdrawn the request, prior to bringing it back up.
Plans for The Quarry include 25 single-family home lots on two cul-de-sac roads near the clubhouse, 10 apartments, 60 townhomes and four single-family lots in a middle section, and 24 townhomes, 16 apartments and five single-family lots at the south end.
Councilman Henderson said the property was rezoned from R1 to R4/C-1 in 1977. He said there was a change in 1980 to allow a restaurant and bar.
In 1992, he said the City Council carried out a wholesale rezoning that changed a number of C-1 zones to C-2, including The Quarry clubhouse portion.
Councilman Henderson said C-2 is "the wild, wild West. You can do almost anything you want to in a C-2."