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Gas station proposal delayed for review

Published Oct. 2, 2005

(ran NTP edition)

Developers have postponed action on a controversial proposal for a Hess gasoline station at the northeast corner of Van Dyke Road and Gunn Highway.

The rezoning, which was to be heard Monday by a zoning judge, was rescheduled for Jan. 5. The developer, Amerada Hess, requested the delay "in order to respond to issues raised by staff and the neighborhood."

This is the third time someone has proposed to develop the property, which is part of a larger tract owned by Richard and Ardeth Hope of Dade City. All the proposals have drawn opposition because the land is south of St. Petersburg's Cosme-Odessa well field and next to a major water line.

Neighbors have objected in a flurry of letters. The St. Petersburg City Council, which successfully opposed a gas station on the corner in 1992, has not taken a position. But this time, city staffers tentatively recommended that the city negotiate conditions to protect the wells, and support the rezoning. (Petition RZ 97-412 KE)

NORTHDALE: A small vacant pocket of Northdale, just northwest of Gaither High School, has been mapped for 19 houses.

Landowner Arthur Schaer of Odessa is proposing the houses for 9 acres he recently bought at the southern foot of Woodacre Lane. Schaer proposes to extend Woodacre to the south and east, around a 2{-acre cypress stand.

Currently, the land is zoned agricultural. Schaer's request to rezone it "planned development" goes before a county zoning hearing master Dec. 15. (Petition RZ 98-56 KE)

UNIVERSITY NORTH: After nine years in business at Ristorante Francesco, Francesco Marchesini wants to offer diners more ways to quench their thirsts. His restaurant at 1441 E Fletcher Ave. has applied for a "wet zoning" to sell mixed drinks in addition to the beer and wine already served there. The application notes that 10 other properties within 1,000 feet of the restaurant have wet zonings of some sort. The request goes before a land-use hearing officer Dec. 8. (Petition AB 98-107 US)

CARROLLWOOD: A Passage to India, at 13145 N Dale Mabry Highway, has applied for wet zoning to sell beer and wine. The restaurant is near a Mormon church and Calvary Chapel of Tampa, presences that restrict wet zonings unless the county grants a waiver. The request goes before a land-use hearing officer Dec. 1. (Petition AB 98-69 CW)

WESTCHASE: More rearranging is afoot as Westchase makes plans for the northeast corner of Sheldon Road and Linebaugh Avenue. The Westchase developer has asked the county to remove the office designation from 26 acres there. Instead, Westchase is considering plans to build about 120 "courtyard" homes on most of the property.

Westchase manager Jack Rowlett said these homes would face a landscaped community walkway with small yards and low fences, but no street. The houses' garages would be accessible from rear alleys. In case the concept doesn't work out, Westchase also has sought permission to develop apartments on the property, Rowlett said.

Additionally, Westchase wants to switch 2 acres on Sheldon Road, just north of Linebaugh, to a retail designation from offices.

Because Westchase received "entitlements" to a huge mix of developments in its original rezoning, each modification now represents a shifting of its entitled land uses from one parcel to another. (Petition MM 98-64 KE)

CARROLLWOOD: Town houses may not be coming to Lowell Street after all. Windward Homes, a Safety Harbor company, has asked the county to amend the property's zoning to allow 75 houses as an alternative to the 156 town houses approved in May. The change is proposed for 16 acres on the north side of Lowell and Westchester Avenue. The request goes before Hillsborough County commissioners Dec. 9. (Petition PRS 98-65 CW)

NORTHDALE: A planned one-story, 84-bed retirement home may emerge with two stories if the developer has its way. Liberty Health Care, based in Naples, has asked to amend its rezoning for the home, which is planned for the north side of Bearss Avenue, about 1,000 feet east of N Dale Mabry Highway. This petition goes before county commissioners Dec. 9. (Petition PRS 98-48 LU)