Mint HillPlanning news: Family Dollar may be coming to town.Commissioners recently held a public hearing on a request by Durban Development to build a 8,320-square-foot Family Dollar store on 1 acre of a 4-acre parcel at 9208 Lawyers Road.The land is bordered by Lawyers Road, Walgreens, the bus driveway for Lebanon Road Elementary School, and the school campus. The 4 acres had previously been approved for a fast food restaurant and up to 25,000 square feet of retail. The Mint Hill Planning Board will review the request at their meeting later this month, and commissioners could vote on it as early as Feb. 14. Commissioners also heard a request from Sandy Barnett, representing the Independence High School Lacrosse teams, asking that the teams be allowed to practice on town owned land next to Mint Hill Park on Fairview Road. That land was also being considered for development as a dog park. Concerned about issues such as liability, scheduling, and preparation of the field for practice, commissioners didn’t vote on the issue, but did instruct town manager Brian Welch to work with the Mint Hill Athletic Association to help provide the teams practice fields at their athletic complex on Brief Road. In other business commissioners:• Approved a zoning request by Circle K to upgrade their site with a new store at 9201 Lawyers Road. The existing store will be demolished.• Denied a request to remove “no parking” signs from Pine Hill Road. Several years ago, residents along the road petitioned the board to add signs to their street, but now say they only wanted signs near the intersection of Pine Hill and Wilgrove Mint Hill Roads.• Heard a report Welch that the Mint Hill Chamber of Commerce no longer wants to sponsor Mint Hill Madness, the town’s fall festival held each September. Welch says he’s looking at other options and promised that the festival would continue this year, just under different leaders.Charlotte Apartments: Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.-based RAM Realty Services is seeking permission to build 120 new multifamily units on about 7 acres at Lantern Walk Circle in Piper Glen.The zoning request appears to be a proposed expansion of RAM’s recently acquired 212-unit Piper Station Apartments.RAM announced in December it bought Piper Station as part of a larger portfolio that included properties in Raleigh and Orlando, Fla. A RAM official declined comment.The company is seeking a change from a combination of business and office zoning to multifamily. A public hearing on the request also will be held March 18.Matthews Entrance improvements: Matthews commissioners have approved up to $184,000 for initial plantings and $10,000 for yearly maintenance to install holly, liriope and red knockout roses in 23 medians at town entrances on N.C. 51, U.S. 74, and the Monroe Road/I-485 interchange. The money will come from the town’s tourism funds. The town received permission from N.C. Department of Transportation to plant in the medians at the entrances to Matthews. The median plantings are part of the town’s way-finding project which seeks to spruce up the entrances to the town and provide directional signs to make it easier to find locations around the town. In other business commissioners:• Approved a new version of the town’s downtown master plan. While not a legally binding document, the plan lays out a vision of how the downtown area should grow during the next decade.• Accepted the audit of 2011-2012 town finances. Auditor Matt Braswell reported that while the town’s fund balance – or savings – had decreased about $1.8 million from the previous year, the town still had plenty of cash in reserve.