CARROLLWOOD — A nearly 5,000-square-foot convenience store that northwest Hillsborough homeowners feared would invite noise, traffic and criminals to their largely residential community was dealt another setback this week.
On Tuesday, Hillsborough land use hearing officer Steven Luce recommended that county commissioners deny RaceTrac's request to build an 18-pump gas station on the northwest corner of Ehrlich and Bellamy roads. Commissioners will consider the proposal on April 7.
RaceTrac wants the county to rezone the 3.68-acre site, which is currently designated for agricultural, single-family use and sits next to 1,100 homes and Hillsdale Baptist Church. Neither county planners nor the Hillsborough County City-County Planning Commission endorse the plan, a factor in Luce's ruling.
"The request is out of character with the surrounding residential land uses and is found incompatible with the surrounding Bellamy Road community," he said in his nine-page opinion.
Luce's decision came exactly three weeks after neighbors packed County Center and railed against the idea. Homeowner Jim Anderson and others worried that RaceTrac was proposing nothing more than a "package liquor store that sells gas."
Rodney Thrash can be reached at email@example.com or (813) 269-5303.