It’s not that the Pasco County Commission objects to a towing operator setting up shop in the county, it’s just the proposed location for one on U.S. 41 isn’t the right spot, board members unanimously agreed at the Oct. 11 meeting.
Concerns raised by nearby residents resonated with the board.
Those neighbors raised objections to the likely noise that will result after the towing business opens. They said a 24-hour operation isn’t compatible with the residential neighborhood that’s behind it.
Opponents also said the nature of the business isn’t exactly what they expected, as the county aspires to set a tone for redeveloping the main north-south artery in the heart of Land O’ Lakes.
Several neighbors spoke out against the proposal, including residents of a nearby 54-home subdivision and the owner of a commercial property next door.
One speaker talked about the current hazardous conditions, as motorists try to make U-turns at median cutouts along U.S. 41.
Tow trucks transporting vehicles will add to the hazards by making it harder for motorists to see, while they’re attempting U-turns, and causing greater traffic backups.
In general, opponents said, the proposed operation would not fit in.
The Pasco County Planning Commission and county planners both recommended approval of the request for the towing operation on a 0.62-acre site on the east side of Land O’ Lakes Boulevard, about a mile north of State Road 54.
Applicant Christopher Brown said his company provides a necessary service.
He said his business is under contract with apartment complexes and homeowner associations to remove cars that are double-parked, parked in fire lanes, or parked on properties without permits.
As Pasco grows, the demand for the towing services increases, Brown said.
Brown, who had a contract to purchase the property if his request was approved, said he understands property rights. He pledged he would be a good neighbor.
He said his trucks are new and they don’t have backup beeping sounds. He also offered to provide additional buffering and add soundproofing.
In the end, however, those promised weren’t enough.
Commission Chairwoman Kathryn Starkey told Brown she understands the need for this type of towing service, but said the proposed location just won’t work.
She asked the county’s staff to work with the applicant to see if they can help him find a more appropriate location.
The board voted 5-0 to deny the conditional use request.
Published October 19, 2022
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