Despite resident opposition, Monteray Shores project moving forward

By on November 8, 2023

Preliminary rendering of proposed development for Aug. 21 commissioners’ meeting.

As plans move forward for a proposed 13-acre mixed use development in the Monteray Shores subdivision of Corolla, residents and property owners in the area have launched a petition drive opposing the project.

The online petition STOP Proposed Multi-Use, High Density Development Plan in Corolla – Monteray Shores makes a point of “requesting Currituck County Commissioners place an immediate halt to this plan.” As of the evening of Wednesday, Nov. 8, the petition had garnered 1,150 signatures.

Although plans for the subdivision are still tentative, a preliminary plan presented by the developer, CB Land Development and SAGA CEO Sumit Gupta, would include a 172-room hotel, retail and restaurants with apartments above the business space, as well as residential homes.

In a Zoom interview with the Voice, Michael Momenee, whose wife started the online petition drive, explained his concerns. “This development…is very much not in keeping with the remainder of the adjacent neighborhood in which we own and reside,” he said.

Skip Lane, who has owned a home in the Whalehead Club since 2021, expressed similar concerns, noting though, that the zoning allowing a hotel had been approved some time ago. “The zoning has been in place for such a development, mixed use, no specifics, not on the size of the hotel… Condos that are going to go in this complex on top of the retail. So it’s quite dense,” he said.

Currituck County zoning for the property has been place for 16 years according to Bill Newns, Interim Director of the Currituck County Planning and Inspections Department.

Corolla resident Elizabeth Lindemann, who has owned property in Corolla for more than 35 years, raises another concern. She points out that since the plans were originally approved, circumstances have changed dramatically in the area, noting, among other things, that “the fact that Route 12 is a death trap in the summertime was not necessarily in play all those years ago.”

Concerns about the property and plans for its development were triggered by an Aug. 21 quasi-judicial hearing when the Currituck County Commissioners voted to approve an amended sketch plan for the development that would reduce open space by 1.45 acres.

According to Newns, the reduction in open space would still meet “the open space requirements for Monteray Shores Planned Unit Development as well as the subject parcel.”

The rules governing a quasi-judicial hearing are very specific. It is an evidentiary hearing and unless compelling evidence is presented to commissioners indicating information on the request is either being withheld or incorrect, the commissioners must vote to approve the plans.

Nonetheless, Corolla residents are continuing to press for the approval to be reviewed. And at the Nov. 6 Currituck Board of Commissioners meeting, Corolla residents addressed the subject in public comment.

“I strongly believe the high density…hotel project…will irrevocably change Corolla, both as a safe destination and family friendly tourism destination. You will see that as a poison chalice,” Corolla resident Don Howard said.

“The Corolla market is overwhelmingly families and groups of families who stay in in homes for a week at a time. A 172-room hotel, surrounded on three sides by residential communities, is plainly not in harmony with the area,” Bill Tarlton said.

SAGA’s Gupta contends that a hotel is needed.

“We don’t have enough hotel rooms, they’ve gone down on the Outer Banks,” he said during an interview with the Voice, adding that the area is disproportionately dependent on vacation home rentals.

“Those [rentals] have to be, whether we like those or not, staying somewhat full, otherwise they’re dead weight,” he said, adding that “We need hotels to bring new people to keep those houses relevant, to create new demographic people to have options here.”

Under any circumstance it is unclear if the county could legally rezone the property. A property zoning carries with it vested rights, defined by the NC General Assembly as, “the right to continue a use or complete a project as it was approved, despite subsequent changes to the ordinance.”

The approval of the commissioners on Aug. 21 was for a preliminary plan. As the project moves forward, detailed plans will have to go through a technical review committee. That review process, however, is internal and does not include public comment.

“It’ll all be internal department staff,” Newns said.


Barnhill Contracting Company will receive sealed proposals for Manns Harbor – EMS/Fire Facility (EMS-8), Kitty Hawk – EMS/Fire Facility (EMS-9), Manteo – Youth Center on January 09, 2024. Times to be given on via addendum #01. See the following SCOPE OF WORK: BP 100 – General Trades, BP 105 – Final Cleaning, BP 205 – Demolition, BP 390 – Turnkey Concrete, BP 400 – Turnkey Masonry, BP 500 – Turnkey Structural Steel & Misc. Steel, BP 505 – Light Gauge Metal Trusses, BP 740 – Roofing, BP750 – Siding, BP 790 – Caulking/Sealants, BP 800 – Turnkey Doors/Frames/Hardware/Toilet Specialties/Accessories/Division 10, BP 840 – Curtainwall/Storefront/Glass/Glazing, BP 925 – Drywall/Framing, BP 960 – Resilient Flooring/Carpet/Base/Epoxy, BP 980 – Acoustical Ceilings, BP 990 – Painting and Wall Coverings, BP 1230 – Finish Carpentry and Casework, BP 1250 – Window Treatments, BP 2100 – Fire Protection, BP 2200 – Plumbing, BP 2300 – HVAC, BP 2600 – Electrical, BP 3100 – Earthwork/Turnkey Site, BP 3213- Site Concrete, BP 3290 – Landscaping. Scopes of work may be added and/or deleted at the discretion of the Construction Manager.

Bid Location and Time: Bid opening will be held in the Barnhill Contracting Rocky Mount Training & GPS Technology Room: 800 Tiffany Bvld, Rocky Mount, NC 27804. Time is as follows: January 09, 2024 at 10:00am and 2:00pm. Times per packages to be given on via addendum #01.

Barnhill Contracting Company will receive, open, and read publicly all bids received in person in the Training & GPS Technology Room at the main office and listed with the virtual viewing at the link to be posted on Barnhill’s Plan Room.

Bids will not be accepted from bidders that are not pre-qualified. No facsimile or email submissions are permitted. Sealed bids are to be hand delivered to the bid opening location noted above or mailed Sealed Bids can be delivered before 9:00am the day of the bid to the Barnhill Contracting Company Office at 800 Tiffany Blvd., Suite 200 Rocky Mount, NC 27804. Attention “Clint Hardison.”

The pre-bid meeting will be held in Person & Zoom Meeting on December 06, 2023 at 10:00 am at the Barnhill Contracting’s Rocky Mount Main Conference Room: 800 Tiffany Bvld, Rocky Mount, NC 27804.

The pre-bid meeting link can be located on Barnhill’s online Building Division Plan Room ( and below. A preferred brand alternates meeting will be held via the same link at the end of the Prebid meeting.

Bid Documents can be viewed or downloaded through Barnhill’s online Building Division Plan Room ( after 12/04/2023.

All Bidders are strongly encouraged to include opportunities for HUB participation wherever possible in their respective Bid submission.  HUB participation is a part of this contract and must comply with all requirements set forth in the Bid Documents.

The Construction Manager and Owner reserve the right to add pre-qualified bidders. The Construction Manager and Owner reserve the right to reject any and all bids. Should you require additional direction, please call Barnhill Contracting Company, (Clint Hardison – 252-802-0740).

Clint Hardison is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Dare EMS – Phase 2 Pre-Bid Conference

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  • john

    They buy up land and build developments that for the most part destroy the character of many towns throughout the outer banks. Yes they were approved, but that speaks to town leadership elected. Contractors that care about quality of the products they help build no longer work for them. It’s all about the almighty dollar vs. what is the proper construction to weather the elements of the obx. Thankfully some leaders were unseated in recent elections.

    Thursday, Nov 9 @ 6:18 pm
  • OBX Dan

    Not enough restaurants in Corolla?!? It just shows you how out of touch Gupta is. Existing Corolla restaurant owners can’t find staff to fill shifts as it is, resulting in most having to close 1-2 days per week during the “season.” I don’t just blame Saga, although they certainly deserve blame. Blame the Currituck County Commissioners and “Ike” McRee for destroying Corolla. Zero accountability. It’s time for Corolla residents and property owners to incorporate Corolla and free ourselves from the greedy Currituck mainland Commissioners! Corolla can certainly afford to run itself with all of our tax revenue!

    Thursday, Nov 9 @ 6:25 pm
  • Ronaround

    I sense a strong undercurrent of prejudice and, yes I’m going to say it, racism towards a man who makes a lot of money and by all accounts does it within bounds of the law, zoning and regulations set forth by all of the municipalities around Dare and Currituck.. SAGA is doing what everyone wishes they could do and that is to capitalize on the opportunities available on the OBX. Folks the good old days disappeared in the 1980’s around these parts and if anyone is to blame for the so called “destruction of the Outer Banks” it the families that owned the land for generations and sold it off to the developers.

    Thursday, Nov 9 @ 9:46 pm
  • Steven

    Ronaround, why do you think folks sold of family land? They were forced to with the rise of values and property taxes, they could no longer keep it.
    Since when is something/someone that helps destroy communities
    considered racist. Culture is not race..

    Friday, Nov 10 @ 4:46 am
  • Jimmy John

    How are you going to keep having ire toward the businessman who is a developer, for developing land he owns, and gets the permits, go ahead etc. legally necessary to develop?

    It’s not like they just roll up to a piece of property and just have at it. Quit smearing the businessman and complain about your government maybe? People are dense.

    Friday, Nov 10 @ 5:40 am
  • Dan-O

    Gupta likes to use modifiers: “disproportionately represented by rentals”…”keep those houses relevant”…Without offering a shred of evidence or metrics to back up his statement. He showed his hand when he stated “we need hotels to create a new demographic of people with options.” OK, we get it: demographics. We own a house in Corolla and spent weeks in shoulder & off seasons there. The last three years, we have spent some summer weeks to get re-acclimated to the nature and tenor of the summer crowds. We have decided to sell when the time is right and retire elsewhere. The decision makers & Guptas of the world have made their decisions. Well, there is a boatload of coastline in the United States. Corolla is looking quite different than 20 years ago.

    Friday, Nov 10 @ 7:59 am
  • m

    Ronaround, what a bull-sh_t statement! This discussion is about County Supervisors whom have no regard for the community and a company that doesn’t care what happens to the Outer Banks and for those who live and work here. Both Counties are creating an unsafe environment for the tourist and for the people who live here.

    Friday, Nov 10 @ 8:23 am
  • Goose that Lays Golden Eggs

    I feel sorry for the people who own property on the Currituck County beach side (Corolla, Carova, etc.) but unfortunately this overdevelopment is just going to get worse and worse. The vast majority of the citizens in Currituck County who are eligible to vote live on the main land. For them the beach side of the county is the goose that lays the golden eggs. It pays the majority of their taxes for the rest of the county. If the bridge ever gets built it will be even worse.

    Currituck County has 7 county commissioners that are assigned by voting districts based on resident population. 6 of the 7 are from the mainland. The beach side is assigned just 1 commissioner. To make matters worse that 1 commissioner from the beach side is the big boss who rules over the horse tour industrial complex. He is chairman of the board of the county commissioners, he is vice chainman of the “non-profit” Wild Horse Fund, and he own the two largest horse tour companies which gives him influence over all the other local voters who benefit from the horse tour businesses. He is also the most pro-development of all the commissioners.

    In this version of Aesop’s famous fable, Corolla, Carova and the rest of Currituck County beach side play the role of the goose.

    Friday, Nov 10 @ 9:01 am
  • Obxserver

    Reading through the comments of OBX Dan and “Goose” above: Suppose Corolla and Carova figured out a way to secede from Currituck County and become a part of the town of Duck (yes therefore Dare County but shielded from that hot mess by being part of Duck) until they could get organized enough to incorporate on their own. Take control of their destiny. Currituck would be just fine continuing to develop as a southern suburb of Chesapeake. Actually makes more sense geographically and representationally. Then in spite Currituck could block the bridge. Win-win all the way around.

    Friday, Nov 10 @ 1:38 pm
  • Beachie Keen

    Curious how many who have commented know that SAGA is requesting changes to the Currituck UDO so they don’t have to provide handicap ramps!

    Friday, Nov 10 @ 7:08 pm
  • Fat old guy

    Whoa! According to a poster above, if you oppose something that he believes in you must be racist. Really? Did you proof read your comment? Where do you live? I’m betting not here.
    How about the poster come spend a few days here in the Summer?
    Endure the slow moving sightseers, the slow moving lost, and the speeding pool and house cleaners.
    The vibrant businesses that will be adversely affected, restaurants and inns have provided employment and services.
    Please explain how 172 additional rooms will add to the quiet charm that is Corolla.
    Years ago, the Summer after super storm Sandy we had numerous visitors from New Jersey. Most loved the quiet, family atmosphere
    In Corolla as it differed from the Jersey shore. A strange few asked where our oceanfront boardwalk and rides were.
    Yeah, let’s encourage the latter.
    Maybe if we are lucky, SAGA will add a casino.

    Sunday, Nov 12 @ 7:46 am
  • Greg

    The bottom line is that there is no public parking at the beach in this area. There is almost no public beach parking in all of Corolla.

    Sunday, Nov 12 @ 10:43 am
  • Chapter2

    Hope the voice will stay on this story especially after the special use permit granted the developers came back so they would not have to comply with the parameters of that permit
    Seems Virginian Pilot might be on board
    Who knows a wider story that could energize other “David’s fightin Goliath”

    Monday, Nov 13 @ 7:14 pm