Ormond Beach's 'I-2, Heavy Industrial' zoning district will be deleted

The zoning district was created on Aug. 1 to match Halifax Paving's heavy industrial county zoning, but worried that it could pave the way for Belvedere, the commissioners agreed to get rid of it.

David Hood Plaza at the Ormond Beach City Hall. Photo by Jarleene Almenas
David Hood Plaza at the Ormond Beach City Hall. Photo by Jarleene Almenas
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The city of Ormond Beach will eliminate its newly created "I-2, Heavy Industrial" zoning district, as agreed by the commission at its meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 4.

As the city continues to prevent Belvedere Terminals' construction of a 16-tank fuel farm at 874 Hull Road, residents have been asking the city to eliminate the zoning designation, which was approved via a land development code amendment on Aug. 1. The zoning district, first identified as a future need in a 2010 Comprehensive Plan Evaluation and Appraisal Report, was created after the city annexed 52 acres owned by Halifax Paving at 860 Hull Road and 1399 Hull Trail.

The Halifax Paving property had a heavy industrial zoning designation from Volusia County, as it was previously unincorporated. The property at 874 Hull Road, owned by the Florida East Coast Railroad, is also unincorporated and zoned heavy industrial. Properties annexed into the city have a legal right to be assigned a land use and zoning that matches what they had in the county.

The city's I-2 zoning district had identified bulk fuel storage as a conditional use. In a Sept. 8 meeting with the Observer, City Attorney Randy Hayes said that the county's heavy industrial zoning definition is "so broad" that bulk fuel storage is considered a permitted use. 

"My understanding of what our planning staff was trying to do was, in recognition that these were uses common in the heavy industrial district, you identify them in your code and then as a way to restrict their location, you condition those as a conditional use," Hayes said.

With conditional uses, the property would need to go through the Planning Board and City Commission for approval. 

The city and its residents are not only fighting to keep Belvedere from building a fuel farm in Ormond Beach, said resident Robin Magleora at the Oct. 4 meeting. They're fighting to keep a fuel farm away from Volusia County — whose 16 municipalities are passing resolutions of opposition at their government meetings — and they're fighting to keep it out of Florida, she said.

"We are in the forefront," Magleora said. "We are the one that are battling them right now. We have land that is zoned appropriate for them to move in."

The property at 874 Hull Road is under county jurisdiction, and while Halifax Paving's property has been annexed, it hasn't been rezoned to the city's I-2 district. 

City Manager Joyce Shanahan said that, based on this, the zoning district could be eliminated.

"I agree, let's delete it," Commissioner Susan Persis said.

The city will bring back an action item for the commission to vote on regarding the zoning district. 

This comes after the commission passed two motions stating it would not provide utilities or allow Belvedere to annex into the city at a Sept. 20 meeting.

The St. Petersburg-based company is planning to invest about $750 million in the state by constructing a total of 10 fuel terminals within the next five years. The first of three sites planned to be developed will be in Jacksonville, followed by spurs in Ormond Beach and Ft. Pierce.

Ormond Beach is also working to create an interlocal agreement establishing a joint planning and municipal service area for zoning and land uses involving unincorporated lands that share a boundary with the city. 

But that's a long process, Shanahan said. Establishing the current interlocal boundary agreement with the county for the North U.S. 1 corridor took four years.

Hayes said the city could expand the footprint of the North U.S. 1 corridor interlocal boundary agreement, or create a new one. It's a longterm project with potential legal issues that need to be navigated through, he said.

"It's not going to be a quick process or a quick fix, and it's not something that we're going to be working on forward right now because there are some things that we've got to push forward in front of that," Hayes said.


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