Clinton City Council approves family units


By Chris Berendt - [email protected]



Larzaris Butler speaks to City Council about his request for a conditional use permit to construct duplex units off North Boulevard, which the board unanimously approved earlier this week.


More housing opportunities are poised for Clinton with the approval given to construct duplex-style units off North Boulevard earlier this week.

A public hearing regarding a conditional use request by Larzaris Butler to construct the 5-unit duplex-style multi-family development was held at the City Council meeting this week. The Council unanimously approved the request for the proposed housing, which will be located along Jasper Street and Connie Court, on opposite sides of North Boulevard in the area of Food Lion.

The Planning and Zoning Board previously offered their unanimous recommendation and Council followed suit, deeming that the request met the five requirements for conditional use.

Larzaris Butler is the applicant and Betty and Judith Griffin are the owners of the property, which contains approximately 27,085 square feet. The proposed duplexes meet the minimum setback and parking requirements of the Clinton Land Development Ordinance, which requires lots being developed for multi-family dwellings to have 20 feet of separation between each building.

All adjoining property owners were notified and no opposition received, Clinton-Sampson Planning director Mary Rose said.

“We received no inquiries or opposition to this request,” Rose noted. Similarly, no opposition was heard at the Council meeting.

Butler, born and raised off U.S. 701 in Clinton, has lived in the community his whole life and said he simply wants to contribute to his hometown — and this is how he wants to do it.

“My plan is very simple. This is my home, I love it and I’m planning on growing old here,” said Butler, whose parents accompanied him to the Council hearing. “So I definitely want to grow Clinton as much as I can. One thing I have seen that Clinton is lacking is housing. I am trying to do my part to grow that as much as I can.”

The duplexes will each be two bedroom, two bath and measure just under 1,000 square feet apiece. They will be brick structures, with front porches and driveways for each unit, Butler noted.

Council members inquired about fencing — specifically to separate the units from a nearby daycare — and placement of driveways, while also encouraging the installation of improved lighting in the area that might help.

“I’ve had some of the folks in the apartments behind Food Lion mention to me that it’s a little dark over there,” Councilman Steve Stefanovich told Butler. Duke Energy representatives have said the lighting is “appropriate,” the councilman noted, “but you might take a look at it. It may require another light over there. Certainly not part of the conditional use, but just as a suggestion.”

No stipulations were placed on the conditional use.

Butler said cutting down the brush in that area might help, something he planned to do. Stefanovich agreed.

“That would help a lot cleaning that up. That’s a mess and that would be great,” Stefanovich remarked. “I appreciate your investment in this community. My hat’s off to you.”

The Clinton 2035 Comprehensive Plan addresses encouraging “infill” development or development on vacant parcels accessible to water and sewer service. The property has access to both city utilities, Rose noted. The comprehensive plan further states that residential density will be dictated by the applicable zoning district, in this case R-8 Residential.

“Staff in our review has had no concern about the placement of driveways,” said Rose, who noted driveways for two duplexes (containing two units apiece) will be facing Jasper Street. There will be another single unit that has a driveway going to Connie Court. “The reason he is doing one single unit on Connie Court is because that is what our density requires. It would not have allowed a third duplex.”

Rose said the review of the plans have been “thorough.”

Council ultimately signed off on the required standards: that the use will not materially endanger the public health or safety; not substantially injure the value of adjoining or abutting property; will be in harmony with the area in which it is to be located; and be in general conformity with the Land Development Ordinance adopted by the Council.

Rose pointed to Butler’s new development in Clinton’s District 5, near the corner of Layton and Earl streets, a couple of blocks from the Sampson Center.

“Mr. Butler has just completed a duplex in District 5 and it’s turned out very lovely,” Rose commented. “He has been a pleasure and delight to work with during this process.”

“Thank you for your investment,” said Mayor Lew Starling, “and we wish you the best.”

Reach Managing Editor Chris Berendt at 910-249-4616. Follow the paper on twitter @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.

By Chris Berendt

[email protected]

Larzaris Butler speaks to City Council about his request for a conditional use permit to construct duplex units off North Boulevard, which the board unanimously approved earlier this week.
http://clintonnc.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/web1_duplex.jpgLarzaris Butler speaks to City Council about his request for a conditional use permit to construct duplex units off North Boulevard, which the board unanimously approved earlier this week.

Reach Managing Editor Chris Berendt at 910-249-4616. Follow the paper on twitter @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.

comments powered by Disqus