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Maggie Valley will discuss restricting campgrounds, RV parks

Maggie Valley will discuss restricting campgrounds, RV parks

Maggie Valley will discuss restricting all campgrounds and RV parks after newly-elected Alderman Jim Owens recommended the move during his first board of aldermen meeting. 

At the Dec. 7 agenda setting meeting, Owens spoke of the strong public input during the November elections that saw Owens and John Hinton elected to the board. 

“About a month ago we had an election that drew the largest voter turnout in history and the voters were both vocal and very engaged,” said Owens. “And during the campaign, the most passionate and consistent appeal was ‘please no more campgrounds in Maggie Valley.’ We heard that loud and clear from so many of the people that were out voting during the campaign, we talked to dozens and dozens of people.”

He called to remove campgrounds from what is permissible under C1 and C2 zoning, the only zoning options under which campgrounds are permitted. Additionally, he asked that RV parks and campgrounds not be allowed under Planned Unit Developments in C1 and C2 zoning. 

The Town of Maggie Valley currently has no Unified Development Ordinance but is working on one and plans to have it completed in the next year. Regardless of what, if any, decision is made about campgrounds and RV parks right now, the issue will be taken up again in the creation of the UDO. 

“At that point in time, when we look at the new master plan, we may be able to designate areas where they fit. But the constant input we got was no more campgrounds please, along the corridor [of Soco Road],” said Owens. 

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Town Manager Nathan Clark told the board that this is not something that could be taken care of this month, due to laws requiring advertisement of public hearings. However, the board could add to the agenda for the December meeting a call for a public hearing and direct staff to draft a text amendment. 

It only takes two consenting board members to have an item added to an upcoming agenda, so the request will be on the agenda for the December meeting of the Board of Aldermen of Maggie Valley despite protestation from Alderman Phillip Wight. 

“That blanket policy could hurt people in certain situations,” said Wight. 

Alderwoman Tammy Wight also expressed her concerns with banning campgrounds and RV parks. 

“I realize that campgrounds can be an eyesore, but we’re also in the tourism department, we’re known for outdoors, hiking trails and all the things that people come here to do and campgrounds kinda fall into that category too. So what kind of message are we sending to the RV world and all those places?” she said. 

Allen Alsbrook, a hotel owner in Maggie Valley, tried to broaden the discussion to include “other things that clutter up the valley.” According to him one big problem is RV storage. The board did not decide to include RV storage or other clutter problems in their upcoming discussion. 

The call for public hearing and direction for staff to draft a text amendment will be added to the agenda for the Dec. 14 board of aldermen meeting. If the motion passes at that meeting, the public hearing will take place at the board’s January meeting.

“This is also a great opportunity to really get to hear what people think about campgrounds, because you’re calling for the public hearing,” said Clark. 

Leave a comment

3 comments

  • There is obvious a personal agenda by Jim Owens and others regarding RV parks and campgrounds. Check with other communities on how they keep these facilities up to acceptable standards. You will hurt the tourism activity by arbitrarily eliminating these operations. Don't shoot from the hip. This should be a heads up about the motivation and agendas of Mr. Owens. Beware.

    posted by Nathan Jameson

    Friday, 12/10/2021

  • There is obvious a personal agenda by Jim Owens and others regarding RV parks and campgrounds. Check with other communities on how they keep these facilities up to acceptable standards. You will hurt the tourism activity by arbitrarily eliminating these operations. Don't shoot from the hip. This should be a heads up about the motivation and agendas of Mr. Owens. Beware.

    posted by Nathan Jameson

    Friday, 12/10/2021

  • Maybe RV owners should Boycott Maggie Vally and take our businees Elswhere. Does your community realize the amount of money Campers spend in Maggie Vally. Sounds to me like a bunch of whiny Leberals taking over the city of Maggie Vally so sad !

    posted by Frank Sacosky

    Friday, 12/10/2021

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