STUART, Fla. — The city of Stuart was hit with another setback in its pursuit to build a Costco on South Kanner Highway.
An administrative law judge with the state ruled against the city, saying it didn't correctly assign a future land-use designation for the 49-acre property.
"There is no question that the City failed to consider the maximum development potential made available through designation of the Property as Neighborhood Special District," Judge Francine M. Ffolkes said in the ruling. "The [land-use] amendment is not supported by a professionally acceptable methodology that analyzes the availability of central water supply, wastewater services, and traffic impact on the level of service of Kanner Highway and adjacent roadways."
The project includes building a gas station, 378 apartments, retail and restaurant space.
Many Stuart residents have been very open about their opposition to the location of the development.
They contend that it will make traffic near Martin County High School worse and ruin the area's wetlands.
Representatives of the city said they were surprised by the decision, but that there are still steps in this process before the issue is decided.
Read the judge's full ruling below: