Washington County planners reject self-storage business east of Fayetteville

Planners give approval despite opposition of nearby residents

The Washington County Courthouse stands March 25, 2016, in Fayetteville.
(File Photo/NWA Democrat-Gazette/Andy Shupe)
The Washington County Courthouse stands March 25, 2016, in Fayetteville. (File Photo/NWA Democrat-Gazette/Andy Shupe)

FAYETTEVILLE -- A crowd of more than 60 people filled the Quorum Court meeting room Thursday night to show their opposition to a pair of businesses proposed for their neighborhoods in unincorporated areas of Washington County.

The conditional use permit for the Mally Wagnon Self-Storage facility in the 2100 block of Mally Wagnon Road was not approved when a motion to grant the permit failed to gain a second. The applicant can refile the project with the county's Planning Department or appeal the permit decision to the Washington County Quorum Court.

According to information from the Planning Department, the business is proposed for a parcel of about 6.5 acres of land in the 2100 block of Mally Wagnon Road. The self-storage business would have 14 buildings of different sizes, built in phases. According to the application, 11 of the planned buildings are 30 feet by 200 feet in size, one is 30 feet by 179 feet, one is 30 feet by 136 feet and one is 30 feet by 44 feet.

Neighbors of the area spoke in opposition to the permit, citing the residential character of the area and the already difficult traffic conditions that exist where Mally Wagnon Road connects with Arkansas 16. The residents also said a large, commercial development would change the natural flow of water in the area and could affect numerous springs.

Peter Reagan, who lives just north of the proposed business site, said water from the location already flows across his property, at times flooding his driveway. He said that after a recent heavy rain he had more than 4 inches of water running from the business property to his.

Evan House, another resident of the area, said any business would also bring light pollution to the rural area and destroy the scenic views that attracted many residents to the area.

"We really prefer to keep this area residential and quiet," he said. "If you approve this it opens the door to other commercial development."

A conditional use permit for the EagleCrest Recovery facility, a proposed residential addiction treatment center at 19965 Lakeview Road, was tabled at the applicant's request after Planning Board chairman Joel Kelsey explained that approval would require all four of the board members present to vote in favor of the request. Three of the seven members were absent from Thursday's meeting. The permit will remain on the agenda for the board's Jan. 12 meeting.

The EagleCrest Recovery facility is already operating on about three acres of land northeast of Springdale. According to information from the county's Planning Department, the residential treatment facility is licensed by the state and can house up to 15 people and have from two to five staff members present. The facility uses three residences already on the property.

A number of residents of the area near Beaver Lake attended the meeting and expressed their disappointment that the board did not consider the permit request.

The story was updated to correct the status of the proposed facility.

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