Frank Shaw appeared before Conway Planning Commission Monday night to request the rezoning of his property on Cross Street from single family residential to historical residential. Rezoning to historical residential would allow two lots.
He initially requested the adjacent lot at 2018 Caldwell Street be included in the rezoning, but at the meeting said he wanted to keep that parcel one lot instead of dividing it.
Shaw said he has an agreement with Hal Crafton concerning the property. Crafton has agreed to purchase and develop the land with two houses on Cross Street.
The property used to belong to Homer and Faye Jones. Shaw was a student under Faye Jones and he purchased the property from their sons after Homer and Faye passed away.
“They had numerous people trying to buy it and one of the conditions that I made, an oral promise which is still good, is that I’d never put duplexes or multi-family on this property,” Shaw said. “I’ve had more than one offer to build a triplex on either side. I didn’t even sign the offer, I didn’t counter-offer. I just said no.”
Several people from the community came out with concerns about the rezoning, including what smaller lots would do to the integrity of the historic district and what building new structures would do to the trees on the property.
“We have very strong reservations about smaller structures in these locations,” said Marianne Welch, president of the Old Conway Preservation Society. “They may end up being more like the small ranch rentals to the west as opposed to the large, historic and elegant homes to the east.”
The planning commission moved to approve the request and send it on to city council with a vote of eight to one.
If approved at the city council level, the Historic District Commission would be able to guide the new construction to make it fit with historic and recent past architecture.
(Staff writer Angela Spencer can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 505-1212. To comment on this and other stories in the Log Cabin, log on to www.thecabin.net. Send us your news at www.thecabin.net/submit)