LIVE UPDATES: Fayetteville City Council recap: July 17, 2018

File photo

On the agenda…

  • Purchasing a rowing dock for Lake Fayetteville.
  • New A/V equipment for City Hall Room 111.
  • A contract for the Regional Park Slope Reconstruction Project.
  • Rezoning 0.35 acres on West Walnut Avenue.
  • The naming of South Centennial Park Lane.
  • Rezoning 0.34 acres at Eagle Street and Oakland Avenue.
  • Rezoning 3.58 acres near Oldham Drive and Broyles Avenue.

» Download the full agenda

A meeting of the Fayetteville City Council began at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 17, 2018 inside room 219 of City Hall, located at 113 W. Mountain St. in Fayetteville.

Listed below are the items up for approval and links to PDF documents with detailed information on each item of business.

Roll Call

Present: Adella Gray, Sarah Marsh, Mark Kinion, Matthew Petty, Mayor Lioneld Jordan, Justin Tennant, Kyle Smith
Absent: Sarah Bunch

» View current attendance records

City Council Meeting Presentations, Reports and Discussion Items

1. Monthly Financial Report – City Finance Director Paul Becker

Agenda Additions

1. Fayetteville Housing Authority 2018 Annual Plan and Rolling Five-Year Plan (Details) – A resolution to recommend approval or changes to the Fayetteville Housing Authority’s 2018 Annual Plan and Rolling Five-Year Plan prior to Mayor Jordan’s signature in support of the plan.
Tabled 7-0 until Aug. 7

Notes: This was brought forward by Council Member Marsh who said she has some concerns about the management of public housing in Fayetteville.

In a memo sent to city staff, Marsh mentioned a recent water line break that left residents of Willow Heights without water this week (it’s now fixed). She said the Housing Authority Board was “dragging their heels on making necessary repairs.”

Marsh said the situation was coupled with a lot of concern from residents about the housing board’s operations in general.

By introducing this item and tabling it until the next City Council meeting, the public would have time to weigh in on the board’s plan and give feedback to the council before it’s signed by the mayor.


Consent items are approved in a single, all-inclusive vote unless an item is pulled by a council member.

1. Approval of the July 3, 2018 City Council Meeting Minutes
Pass 7-0

2. AccuDock Rowing Dock (Details): A resolution to approve the purchase of a rowing dock with canoe and kayak launch area from JMH Marine, Inc. d/b/a AccuDock in the amount of $33,183.74 plus applicable taxes, pursuant to a Federal General Services Administration Cooperative Purchasing Contract, to be installed at Lake Fayetteville, and to approve a budget adjustment.
Pass 7-0

3. The Field Shop, Inc. (Details): A resolution to approve a change order to the contract with The Field Shop, Inc. of Little Rock to expand the scope of services to include the purchase and installation of audio-visual equipment for City Hall Room 111.
Pass 7-0

4. Central Arkansas Recycling and Disposal Services, Waste Hauling Agreement (Details): A resolution to approve an agreement with Central Arkansas Recycling and Disposal Services, LLC for the hauling of solid waste and recyclable material in the City of Fayetteville.
Pass 7-0

5. Bid #18-36 Tri Star Contractors, LLC (Details): A resolution to award Bid #18-36 and authorize a contract with Tri Star Contractors, LLC in the amount of $743,491.83 for construction of the Hickory Street, Jasmine Lane and Skelton Street water line improvements, and to approve a project contingency in the amount of $74,000.00.
Pass 7-0

6. Curtis Construction, Inc. (Details): A resolution to approve a contract with Curtis Construction, Inc. in the amount of $578,786.00, plus a contingency of $29,000.00 for construction of the Regional Park Slope Reconstruction Project and to approve the attached budget adjustment.
Pass 7-0

Unfinished Business

1. RZN 18-6206 (1760 N. Walnut Ave./Niederman) (Details): An ordinance to rezone that property described in rezoning petition RZN 18-6206 for approximately 0.35 acres located at 1760 N. Walnut Avenue from RSF-4, Residential Single Family, 4 units per acre to NC, Neighborhood Conservation.
Pass 5-2

Notes: This item was left on the first reading on June 19 and the second reading on July 3.

The Planning Commission recommends approval of the request.

The lot is within the Hillside-Hilltop Overlay District and contains a 1,760-square-foot home built in 1967. This section of Walnut Avenue is a two-lane ‘Collector Street’ that acts as a high-volume east-west connection. The proposed zone would allow the property to be sub-divided into 3 building lots.

From city documents:

The proposed zoning is compatible with the surrounding residential land uses, and although this zoning does allow a variety of building types, only single-family dwellings are allowed by right. The proposed zoning allows reduced lot sizes when compared to the surrounding neighborhood, but in staff opinion the change is not so radical as to create an incompatible development pattern.

Staff said during the May 29 Planning Commission meeting, multiple property owners spoke in opposition to the request stating that the steep property was not suitable for Neighborhood Conservation zoning and that there are dangerous traffic conditions on adjacent streets that would be compounded by increased density of development.

Here’s a map:

June 19 Discussion
Former council member Kyle Cook spoke against the rezoning. He said he believes in more residential density in Fayetteville, but said not every piece of land should be dense. He said dropping in a Neighborhood Conservation zoning in the middle of an RSF-4 neighborhood could set a bad precedent.

Council member Kinion said while NC is good for many properties, it isn’t appropriate for this particular area. He said stormwater runoff is already an issue on this street. Increasing density there, he said, could lead to a bigger runoff problem. Bunch agreed.

Marsh said the two zoning districts are very similar. She said with the lot’s close proximity to College Avenue – an area where the council is currently working to increase walkability – she thinks it’s a good reason for increasing density there.

Kinion suggested leaving the item on the first reading and possibly taking a tour of the area before making a decision.

Petty agreed. He said NC is very similar to RSF-4, but is more traditional in format because it promotes smaller homes. He said the RSF-4 zoning district can be traced back to the 1970s. Before that, Petty said neighborhoods were zoned more closely in the NC format. Petty said RSF-4 was implemented by Planning Commissioners who were quoted as saying they’d rather have large, luxury homes in neighborhoods instead of small, cheap homes. He said he doesn’t blame anyone for living in RSF-4 neighborhoods – after all, people his age grew up in those areas – but said the zoning district was crafted by people who governed the city outside the best interest of the whole of Fayetteville.

July 3 Discussion
City staff said City Council members toured the property this week and discussed the following:

  • The property’s 143-foot lot frontage would allow 2 lots under existing zoning and 3 lots under proposed NC zoning.
  • The property is in the Hillside/Hilltop overlay district, which requires a grading permit, tree preservation and retaining walls.
  • The property is on a Collector Street, which requires shared access with safe sight distance for curb cuts.

Former council member Kyle Cook spoke again on July 3 and echoed his remarks from June 19.

Petty reiterated his comments from June 19 as well, and said the property is only about 800 square feet shy of being eligible for a lot split as it is, so he’ll support the request.

Kinion said he can’t see a compelling argument to change the property from RSF-4 considering it’s one piece of land in the middle of an RSF-4 neighborhood.

Marsh and Smith said they wish this request had come after the upcoming College Avenue plan. The components of the plan, they said, will likely change the city’s vision for this particular neighborhood because of its proximity to College Avenue and the plan’s expected encouragement of walkability in that area.

Bunch said she feels strongly that the property should not be rezoned. She said the topography is too challenging and the sight distance from the curve presents a potential danger.

Marsh, Petty, Tennant and Smith voted to send the item to the third reading, but it needed five votes, so the discussion will continue on July 17.

July 17 Discussion
The council voted to send the item to the third and final reading tonight.

The applicant, Zara Niederman, acknowledged the concerns expressed in the past few meetings, including claims that the street is too dangerous, that development of two new homes will introduce stormwater drainage problems and that the site is too steep to build upon.

He said city data shows there were only five accidents in the area from 2011-2015. Four of those accidents, he said, were single-vehicle collisions with trees or deer.

Niederman said there is a lot of stormwater runoff on the property, but city data shows it’s not an area with major flooding issues. He said when the site is developed, he’ll have to follow all of the city’s regulations regarding stormwater management.

As for the steepness of the site, he pointed to Marks Mill Lane (can be seen behind and above Kum & Go at the intersection of College Avenue and Township Street) which includes several new houses built responsibly on steep grades.

Other than the applicant, there was no public comment on July 17.

Council member Kinion said he’s still not convinced the property is ready for an increase in density at this time. In the future, if a plan is developed that addresses the entire area’s stormwater challenges, he might be in favor of a change in zoning.

Council member Petty said he’s walked the property and driven the road many times. He called the rezoning request “modest” and said he doesn’t think splitting the large lot into two would be too much of a density increase. He said it’s currently only 800 square feet shy of being allowed to hold two houses and he doesn’t see why this rezoning would be a burden on the area.

There was no other comment from the council on July 17. The final vote was 5-2 to approve. Kinion and Tennant voted against.

New Business

1. South Centennial Park Lane Right of Way Naming (Details): A resolution to name a previously un-named right of way connected to West Old Farmington Road as South Centennial Park Lane.
Pass 7-0

Notes: The city acquired a portion of right of way in September 2016 but did not assign a new name at that time. The section services six residential addresses and was a private drive prior to acquisition. All existing residences on this section of road are currently using West Old Farmington Road addresses, but that address scheme can cause confusion for public safety and general navigation because the road is a separate road segment that turns north from West Old Farmington Road.

Here’s a map:

There was no public comment. La Tour moved to pass the resolution. Gray seconded.

The resolution passed unanimously.

2. RZN 18-6227 (SE of Eagle Street & Oakland Avenue/Campbell) (Details): An ordinance to rezone that property described in rezoning petition RZN 18-6227 for approximately 0.34 acres located southeast of Eagle Street & Oakland Avenue from RMFf-40, Residential Multi Family, 40 units per acre to RI-U, Residential Intermediate – Urban.
Pass 7-0

Notes: According to city documents, the applicant needs the rezoning to subdivide the property for single-family homes. City staff have heard from residents who are concerned that a large tree which sits on the property might be removed, but staff noted that this is a rezoning process, not a development request.

Both city staff and the Planning Commission are in favor of the request.

Here’s a map:

Michael King, a representative for the applicant, said the plan is to put three single-family houses on the property and to preserve the tree that the neighbors were concerned about.

There was no public comment.

Council member Kinion said he very much wants for the tree to be preserved, but he reminded the council that regardless of the zoning, there is no way regulated way to protect the tree if three single-family homes are built on the property.

King said he’s met with the city’s Urban Forester about the issue and that they’ve discussed ways to ensure the tree can be preserved.

The council moved the item to the second and third reading, and then passed the ordinance unanimously.

3. RZN 18-6239 (NE of Oldham Drive & Broyles Avenue/North Lots-Sloanbrooke Phase II) (Details): An ordinance to rezone those properties described in rezoning petition RZN 18-6239 for approximately 3.58 acres located northeast of Oldham Drive and Broyles Avenue from R-A, Residential Agricultural to NC, Neighborhood Conservation and from NC, Neighborhood Conservation to R-A, Residential Agricultural.
Left on the first reading

Notes: The applicant wants to rezone a portion of the land from R-A to NC to allow for the construction of homes. In return, property elsewhere within the area will be rezoned from NC to R-A. City staff said the overall acreage swapped between districts is equivalent to one another and would allow the creation of approximately six more residential lots.

Both city staff and the Planning Commission are in favor of the request.

Here’s a map:

Council member Marsh said she’d like to hold the item on the first reading to allow some time for her to visit the property.


– City officials are seeking seven volunteers to conduct the annual Keep Fayetteville Beautiful Litter Index.


This meeting was adjourned at 7:01 p.m.