Last evening the Huntersville Planning Board heard from Town Engineer Max Buchanan about recently approved amendments to a Traffic Impact Analysis (TIA) Ordinance. Despite the fact that the new ordinance had been approved unanimously by the Town Board on February 6th, a few members of the Planning Board expressed concerns about the changes, which provide more options for a developer to make infrastructure improvements to address traffic impacts caused by their project.
At last night’s called workshop, Planning Board Chair Hal Bankirer and other board members questioned Buchanan about how the new language may allow developers to pay less for infrastructure improvements than the original ordinance — implying the development community was not paying its fair share. Buchanan defended the changes, arguing that they allowed for more flexibility for both developers and the Town, while established for a more common-sense solution to addressing traffic improvements. Instead of tying the improvements to a direct dollar amount, they are now tied to an actual percentage based on improvement in traffic flow.
REBIC supported the recently adopted TIA amendments as a win-win for developers and the Town of Huntersville. And while we recognize that the Planning Board serves a vital advisory role to the Town Board, we’re concerned that they’re overstepping that role in questioning an ordinance that was supported by staff and unanimously approved by the elected Town Board.