Board votes to rezone Fianna Hills from golf course to residential neighborhood

The Fort Smith Board of Directors has elected to rezone the Fianna Hills Golf Course as a residential property.

Council voted on three separate ordinances that zoned a total of 22 parcels of land on the golf course adjacent to neighboring properties. While the 19 lots and three plots had all already been approved for rezoning by the town planning commission and under the city code, the decision to go ahead met with opposition from the Fianna Hills Homeowners Association.

Most of the property will only be available to Fianna Hills owners who can purchase the lots to expand their property.

One of the ordinances created eight new lots that people can buy to build their homes on.

“What I would ask is that the city does not oppose a private landowner who has complied with all of the city’s requirements and has the best of intentions to move forward in Fianna Hills,” said Dalton Person, who represents Fianna Hills owner David. Thousand.

Millé owns the Fianna Hills Golf Course and has kept the golf course open for 15 years in the negative.

“In that way, I was not a very good businessman, but I am a man of community,” Millé said.

Millé was unable to sell golf as a golf course. He had an offer to sell to a developer but chose not to because he didn’t want apartments popping up among Fianna Hills.

The property was valued at $ 3 million and Millé was prepared to sell it for $ 2.4 million, Person said.

“We have exhausted all means of trying to sell this for a fair price,” Millé said.

The golf course has not been open for three years.

Of the lots Millé sells, 140 out of 283 are under contract, Person said.

Director Neal Martin and Director Kevin Settle were the only directors to vote against the three ordinances that changed the zoning of the property to single-family residences.

Lawyer John Alford, who represents the homeowners association, said closing the golf course would lower the value of more than 1,000 homes in the area.

“Is this really fair to homeowners across the area,” Settle asked the board.

Settle and Martin both said approving the zoning change would negatively impact residents of Fianna Hills.

“It’s a vital part of this neighborhood,” Martin said of the golf course.