Concern for historic neighborhoods delays zoning revamp
2018-12-13 | Pantagraph
The postponement was prompted by testimony at a public hearing Wednesday and in emails sent to the commission about a 40-year-old R-3B (multiple-family residence district) zoning provision that allows densities of up to 70 dwellings per acre. Opponents want that zoning changed to preserve historic neighborhoods.
Those areas "are in the heart of our historic, older neighborhoods and these structures should be preserved," said
"Many of the homes are on the National Historic Registry," wrote the
His concern was repeated by six other residents during the hearing, which had been continued from
"We realize it's been R-3B for many decades. We would like that changed," said
After digesting the public input, city planner
Others said they thought the proposed zoning code revision was more restrictive.
"My assessment, as is Katie's ... is that when we set out to rewrite this, our intention was specifically not to make it more restrictive, but to actually provide greater flexibility in most areas of the code," said Houseal.
"While I wouldn't call it more restrictive, we do have greater standards in place," he added. "There are not very high landscaping standards right now. We tried to raise those as well as some other design and performance standards."
There have been more than nine hearings before the planning commission on the proposed changes.
The proposed revisions that received the most comments by far are those regulating beekeeping and allowing, for the first time, raising chickens in residential areas, said Houseal, whose
The comprehensive revision was prompted by the city's 2015 comprehensive plan, which outlined a thriving downtown as one of its goals. The last major revision was completed in 2006.
The hundreds of suggested changes include subdividing the city's 26-block downtown into smaller zoning districts to ease redevelopment and consolidating some commercial districts to eliminate duplication.
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