Millville grants site approval for revised Dove Landing community

More than a decade after being mothballed due to adverse economic conditions, the Dove Landing community received final site plan approval from the Millville Town Council on Tuesday, July 10.

The final plans call for 316 homes. That is the same number of homes given preliminary approval in December 2017, but the breakdown of housing types has changed.

The plan finalized this week calls for 127 single-family homes, 66 townhomes with a height of 40 feet, and 123 townhomes that are 28 feet in height. The 95-acre Dove Landing site is located off Burbage Road and Route 17.

Originally, plans called for 140 single-family homes, 142 townhomes and 120 condominiums. The condo units were dropped last year; the taller townhome units were added to the plan presented July 11. Single-family homes were increased to 171 last December before being decreased to 128 for the final site plan.

The Millville Planning & Zoning Commission recommended approval of the changes in the site plan on March 9 and the changes in amenities on July 2.

The town council approved the plans 3-0 this week, with Council Members Pete Michel and Ron Belinko recusing themselves because they live in Bishop’s Landing, which was also built by Beazer Homes and is adjacent to the Dove Landing tract.

Steve Marsh of project engineer George, Miles & Buhr gave a presentation for Dove Landing at a public hearing before the council voted.

Marsh told the council there are no changes from the previously approved plan in the plans for the development’s road network, sewer piping or stormwater drainage system.

Some amenities have been added; for example, the new plans call for two pickleball courts, but fishing piers will be removed from two of the small ponds in the development. A community garden has been replaced with shuffleboard courts, a bench and a pergola.

Marsh said the developer is looking into adding two more pickleball courts, for a total of four, and said if that is deemed appropriate, Beazer would come back to the Town to amend the plan.

The clubhouse and pool plans have not changed, Marsh said.

Marsh said the increased amenities will cost the developer more, but added that the hope is that the added items would speed up sales in the development.

Town Solicitor Seth Thompson noted that there is no change in density from the most recent plan, which was down nearly 100 units from the original plan.

Most of the approximately 35 residents present at the meeting appeared to be from the Bishop’s Landing development. Only a handful chose to speak or ask questions during the public hearing.

Among the concerns were “screening” of four commercial trash containers to be placed in the community for residents’ use, to help keep non-residents of Dove Landing from using them; increased traffic in the area, particularly on Burbage Road; and lighting and noise from some of the amenities, particularly the planned basketball court.

Marsh agreed to suggest the trash containers be placed in such a way that non-residents will not be able to see them from the road.

“I think that’s a great point,” he said.

He also agreed to address the concerns of Denton Manor resident Jacqueline Reed, whose property backs up to Dove Landing. Reed requested extra buffers between her property and the sewer pump station, which is to be placed behind her property, as well as behind the proposed Beach Villas townhomes.

Of the concerns expressed about traffic, Marsh suggested that “people bring their concerns to DelDOT,” because those are out of the purview of the Town and the developer.

In other business, the council heard an update on the town park from Council Member Steve Maneri.

“Building permits are in hand,” Maneri said.

George, Miles & Buhr is currently finalizing site plans for the project, and “the next step is going out to bid,” he said.

By Kerin Magill
Staff Reporter