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Millville City Council voted unanimously this week to approve final site plans for the 216-unit Tupelo Sands apartment complex. The complex is to be located along Route 17 (Roxana Road) adjacent to property owned by Beebe Healthcare, which is expected to expand Beebe’s current facility in the coming years.

Tupelo Sands consists of seven three-story apartment buildings surrounding a stormwater management pond, with a swimming pool and pavilion, as well as a maintenance building and garage. The apartments will be built on 32.75 acres.

City Engineer Andrew Lyons Jr. told council at its Tuesday, May 24, meeting that the project met all of the city’s requirements. Zachary Crouch of Davis, Bowen & Friedel, project engineer, told council that all state and county requirements were also met.

The Millville Planning and Zoning Commission voted 5 to 0 on November 9, 2021 to approve the preliminary site plans for Tupelo Sands. On January 13, 2022, the City received a revised application that included changes to building size and layout, number of buildings, and parking changes, as well as other site plan changes.

In the new plans, the developer again asked for a reduction in parking spaces, from 432 to 398, which was granted.

During the public hearing on the Tupelo Sands plans at the May 24 meeting, some of those present questioned the upkeep of the property, the signage on the proposed water tower (which is not related to the project but adjacent) and the efforts of the proponent. aimed at making the project environmentally friendly.

Crouch said the resort will be “professionally managed by a management company”, which may or may not be a “third party”.

Mayor Ron Belinko, responding to concerns about potential commercial development within the planned communities that make up the majority of Millville’s current construction projects, said the city will review its overall plan – its plan for future growth and development – at the course of the coming year. The city is approaching the fifth year of the 10-year comprehensive plan cycle, and this is usually a time when cities re-examine their plans to see if any changes are warranted.

When questions arose about transit options in Millville’s future, Belinko said, “Things are moving quite slowly in that direction,” but added that “naturally it’s necessary,” with l large elderly population and given Beebe’s plans to expand the South Coastal Health Campus in the coming years, possibly with a full-fledged hospital and/or assisted living facility.

The May 24 council also approved, 5-0, changes to the city code regarding the definitions of hotels, motels and bed and breakfasts. Lyons told the council that the new definitions, which address limits on the number of rooms in different categories, are “more consistent with county and state definitions.” City attorney Seth Thompson said the current definition – the one that’s being superseded – has a “kind of scope that encompasses a lot of things that have nothing to do with a hotel, motel or inn “.