Planning Commission, Feb. 5, 2013

planning & zoning(1)The Homewood Planning Commission met briefly, being called to order by Billy Higgenbotham at 6:15 after a pre- meeting with commission members to discuss zoning changes related to the evening’s agenda.  Three items were addressed, 1) A preliminary plan approval for a shopping center on West Valley Avenue; 2) a rezone approval for an assisted living apartment development, and site redevelopment west of I-65 at 260 Goodwin Crest Drive.

Commission members present:  Billy Higgenbotham, Chairman, Mike Brandt, Vice-chairman, Joe Falconer, Battalion Chief McCombs, James Ponseti, James Riddle, and Mark Woods. Also present was the commission’s city council liaison Fred Hawkins.

All votes are unanimous unless noted otherwise.

Absent:  Fred Azbik

Staff present:  Donna Bridges, secretary, Vanessa McGrath, engineer.

Audience attendance:  5

Approved:  Minutes of the Jan. 8, 2013 meeting.  Ms. McGrath asked to move old business — an ongoing review of the zoning ordinance–to the end of the agenda, which was approved.

New Business:

Approved:  A plan to expand a shopping center at 243 West Valley Avenue with 5,500 square feet of retail space on 1.84 acres following a public hearing in which no one commented. Applicant Pro-Tech Metals, represented by Ken Reynolds from Rainbow City made the request. Mr. Brandt mentioned the need to comply with required parking spaces per the ordinance.  (Ms. McGrath said 15 parking spaces are required per 1,000 square feet of restaurant space, and four parking spaces are required per 1,000 square feet of retail space.)  Several members agreed that there was enough space on that property for the developer to adapt his plans to the ordinance and expand when needed as well.

Approved:  Rezoning a property at 260 Goodwin Crest Drive from C-1, (commercial, office) to MX-D (mixed use district) for an assisted- and independent-living facility with 128 units. Applicant Jun Yang, doing business as Mountain View Resort, LLC, and representative Angie Smith of Springville, presented the plan, which will be a redevelopment of the old Alta Vista Motel. There would be an interior remodel of the existing building. The original request was to rezone to R-6 (Attached Dwelling Unit District), which was changed after discussion about MX-D having more flexibility.  However, a site development plan must be presented for approval if there are any physical changes to the site.  (The R-6 zone would require BZA approval for a variance, the MX-D would only require the signature of the council president.) Ms. McGrath said the development plans were in order.  The proposed timeline for the work to be finished is 8-10 months.

Approved:  Final development plan for the same facility on Goodwin Crest Drive.  (No document made public).

Old Business:  Mr. Ponseti is still working on zoning ordinance changes.  They will be presented in detail at a public hearing, to be announced.

Discussion, etc.: Commission members discussed the West Homewood Village plan.  A video is being made and there is a tentative public meeting scheduled for Thursday, March 14, 5-7 p.m. at the Senior Center. Mr. Hawkins said the recent purchase of property adjacent to Patriot Park on Oak Grove Road ($140,000) included $5,000 for an environmental assessment. He said Philip Amthor, planner with the Regional Planning Commission, which is producing the plan and recommending building code changes, suggested the city request proposals to develop the lot to build enthusiasm for the village concept.

McGrath mentioned her desire to continue to work to hide Dumpsters from view.  The Green Springs Renewal District requires enclosures of Dumpsters and garbage bins which she had made some good progress on enforcing recently.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 6:30 p.m.

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