Wesley Chapel may be developing at breakneck speed, but hundreds of Meadow Pointe residents think there are still lines that need not be crossed.
One of those lines is at the southwest corner of Mansfield Blvd. and County Line Rd., where developers are hoping to build a 3,010-sq.-ft. 7-Eleven gas station and convenience store — adjacent to the Kids R Kids Learning Academy of Meadow Pointe.
A petition started by Meadow Pointe II resident Chris Dillinger was quickly approaching 1,000 signatures last week, as residents expressed concern about having a 16-pump gas station located so close to a preschool.
“That is our No. 1 concern,” said Dillinger, a 39-year-old high school counselor at Sunlake High in Land O’Lakes. “The way the school is set back off of (Mansfield Blvd.), it will basically be blocked in by 16 fuel pumps. It’s not a good set-up. It makes the school less safe.”
Dillinger and other Meadow Pointe II residents have been in contact with Pasco County governmental officials, voicing their concerns.
Trout Creek Properties, Inc., is either making a request for a special exception to sell gas under its current C-1 (neighborhood commercial) zoning, or asking to be granted a Substantial Modification Request to have the 5.32-acre parcel rezoned from C1 to C-2, which is general commercial.
Trout Creek’s first meeting with the county’s Development Review Committee (DRC) in December was first continued to today, but Pasco County senior planner Corelynn Howell said the meeting this afternoon was likely to be continued as well, to a date to be determined.
According to Howell, the developers will need to re-notice the development, which involves mailing notices to all of the property owners abutting the proposed development, as well as re-posting signs.
“The county has concerns about it, so we’re going back and forth with the applicant, negotiating the issues on both sides,” Howell says. “Everyone needs to get their ducks in a row.”
Howell did say the county is leaning away from granting a re-zoning to C-2, because it prefers the property remain residential commercial. In that case, a special exception appears to be the way forward for Trout Creek.
Meadow Pointe II has an ally in Pasco County District 2 commissioner Mike Moore, who represents the area on the Pasco County Board of County Commissioners (BCC).
Moore told organizers that if the re-zoning request made it past the DRC to the BCC — which he chairs — he would vote against it.
“I agree with them,’’ Moore said. “This is a terrible location for these gas pumps. With a daycare center right behind it, it’s just not compatible with the area, in my opinion.”
Another proposed 7-Eleven is currently working its way through the permitting process, near yet another preschool. Developers are looking to build a 2,988-sq.-ft. 7-Eleven at the corner of Bruce B. Downs (BBD) Blvd. and Vanguard St., in front of the existing Goddard School and the new Premier Heart & Vascular Center.
The developers had their pre-application meeting with county planners in October.
For more information about the Meadow Pointe II petition, visit http://bit.ly/2CvXWYw.