RV, mobile home parks booming in Baldwin County, and residents seem not to mind
The Baldwin County Planning and Zoning Commission last week considered two RV parks and a mobile home park, another type of development in the rapidly growing county.
All of these parks would be more than 80 units: Grand River RV Park, which sits on Styx River outside of Loxley, would be 142 units, Graystone RV Park outside of Summerdale would be 88 units, and The Grove, a mobile home park outside of Magnolia Springs would be expanded to 177 units.
Yet, none of these three parks have drawn the same level of outrage as some subdivisions or other developments in the area. While one neighbor voiced their complaint about Grand River RV Park, there wasn’t any organized opposition to these parks as there has been to other developments in Baldwin County. As the county develops at a breakneck pace, residents have often organized to oppose what they argue is too much development.
Belle Fountain Land Company, Gulf Shores-based developers applied for planned unit development approval for Grand River RV Park, which would sit on County Road 64 extension and abut the Styx River. Though staff had recommended approving the RV park, the request was tabled until February at the request of the developer, as the Baldwin County Sewer Service had not yet provided a letter of support for the development before the application deadline. Subdivisions and other planned unit developments have to have letters of support from utility companies, saying they have assessed the development and can support the development.
Larry Toomey, who owns nearby property to the RV park, was the lone voice in opposition. He said he didn’t believe that the highway infrastructure in the area would be able to support the RV park. Planning commission staff had recommended widening County Road 64 near the entrance to accommodate the park, but Toomey argued that wasn’t enough. Toomey also expressed concerns about the drainage and that the park would strain the Styx River. There are wetlands on the park property, but the developers have proposed protecting them with a 15-foot natural buffer and 30-foot building setback.