City Attorney Tim Melenbrink is working to “tweak” the zoning code in the I-2 industrial zoning district.
Melenbrink presented both landscaping requirements and permitted uses in the district to the planning and zoning commission last week.
In terms of landscaping, the current zoning code calls for the zoning official to decide whether a buffer or a fence are required as a boundary line.
“Naturally, there are individuals who would like to have neither of those things,” he said. “They like wide open spaces, and that isn’t an option the way that I ended up writing it.”
Melenbrink suggested broadening the code to include that no buffer be an option if a majority of the property owners are in favor of not having a buffer.
“If the adjoining property owners aren’t opposed to nothing, then why should we force them to have something and force the people to build something?” he asked.
The type of buffer and regulations for each type will remain the same.
The second change is language in an appendix, which allows distribution centers and warehouses of any size. Another section says distribution centers at 10,000 square feet require a conditional use permit.
“That’s obviously a conflict,” Melenbrink said. “You’ve got one general use that says you can do any kind of warehousing or storage in an I-2 district, but in a more limited fashion for anybody under 10,000 square feet.”
Melenbrink said the verbiage penalizes someone doing smaller storage over someone doing larger storage buildings.
The commission voted unanimously to recommend the changes to the industrial zoning code.