Letter – Hard work on PMUD wasted

Published 5:49 pm Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Editor, The Smithfield Times:

I attended the Smithfield Planning Commission meeting where the final details of the PMUD (Planned Mixed-Use Development) zoning provisions were hammered out after months of discussion. I was heartened by what I heard in that meeting since I went into it worried that the document could radically change the type of developments in our town.  

With significant input and guidance from Commissioners Randy Pack and Dr Thomas Pope, the plan had a wide-ranging list of reasonable directives covering setbacks, housing density, parking, building heights as well as a number of other regulations to give a developer a clear path to follow. 

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Unfortunately, Joe Lutter IV has chosen to bulldoze those provisions and has threatened to take his toys and go home if Dr. Pope’s motion to limit the building height is not reversed. In addition, Mr. Luter has intimated that he expects the town to subsidize a significant portion of his infrastructure expenses, something it has never done for any developer. The ball is now in the Town Council’s court, and I hope they have the backbone to make the right decision and deny his application as it is currently presented.  

Pierceville needs to be developed; I am just not sure if by the current developer..


Ed Hipp