The Washington Planning and Zoning Commission approved two downtown development requests Monday night.
Andy Unerstall, with Front Street Development, LLC, requested the approval of a preliminary plat for the Front Street Development Plat II. The phase is for property at the intersection of Market and Front streets where Unerstall is proposing four townhomes.
According to Community and Economic Development Director Sal Maniaci, the property is zoned C-3, Central Commercial District, which allows for the zero-lot lines shown on the plat.
The property is located in the Front Street Development TIF (Tax Increment Financing) district that was approved in February. It is in accordance with the plan that was submitted during the approval process and will add four more residences to the district, Maniaci said.
The commission approved the plat with a 7-0 vote. Tony Gokenbach was not at the meeting. The Washington City Council must give final approval.
The plat shows the Front Street right of way that was vacated in February and shows the utility easements that were required as part of the vacation.
Unerstall noted the primary entrance to the townhomes will be in the rear of the development.
The plat also shows an ingress/egress easement to the rear of the structures that will also serve as the fire lane for the development.
Maniaci said a new fire hydrant is proposed at the end of the fire lane. This will meet city fire hydrant location requirements.
He added there will be a performance agreement with Front Street Development requiring the hydrant be installed.
The plat shows four “flag-shaped” lots that provide right of way frontage for each lot, Maniaci said. This will accommodate addressing the lots, giving each lot a Market Street address.
“It looks unusual on paper, but staff recommends approving the plat as proposed in order to give each lot a small amount of street frontage,” he said.
The commission also approved a request to rezone property located at the northeast intersection of Main Street and Market Street from C-2 to C-3.
There are two structures there, an antique store at 101 E. Main St. and apartments at 105 E. Main St. The apartments are lawfully nonconforming as the property is not zoned for residential use.
According to Maniaci, the property is the only property in the downtown district with C-2 zoning. The proposed C-3 zoning allows for the same commercial uses as in C-2 but also allows for a mix of residential uses. A C-3 zoning would match properties to the north and to the west.
This property is not part of the Front Street Development TIF.
Maniaci noted the rezoning should not be a detriment to the surrounding area and will bring the property into the appropriate zoning given its location downtown.
TIF Project Details
Ground was broken in February for the project that has three sites, with the first being the block between Lafayette and Jefferson streets, behind the old Modern Auto building. Unerstall said he has plans for eight 2,800-square-foot units.
The second site is located on Front and Main streets between Jefferson and Market streets. Residential and commercial buildings are planned.
The second site would have a building at the corner of Jefferson and Main streets. Plans call for 4,000 square feet of retail on the first floor and 3,000 square feet of office space on the second floor.
Site No. 3 is the last site in the TIF area. The property would contain four 1,200-square-foot residential units.
As part of the project, power lines from Market to Lafayette would be buried, which is now underway. Additionally, all the sidewalks around the development would be taken out and replaced.
Unerstall has said he anticipates that it will take two to three years for the three sites to be developed.