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Thread: Laundromat overload

  1. #1
    Cyburbian IlliniPlanner's avatar
    Registered
    Jan 2005
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    Chicagoland
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    151

    Laundromat overload

    I'm looking for anyone that has good standards for siting and/or regulating laundromats in their community. The number of laundromats here keeps rising despite the fact that we have not approved any new rental developments within the last 10 years. Some people I have spoken to suggested having an established number of conditional uses that we would issue for laundromats. But counsel has come back stating that we cannot legislate a market-driven need. It seems the more laundromats there are, the harder it is for the existing laundromats to maintain its share of the market which in turn provides the existing laundromats less income to reinvest in the upkeep and maintenance of their own establishments, impacting the surrounding neighborhood. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!
    One lot of redevelopment prevents a block of sprawl.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian boiker's avatar
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    Dec 2001
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    West Valley, AZ
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    Quote Originally posted by IlliniPlanner
    I'm looking for anyone that has good standards for siting and/or regulating laundromats in their community. The number of laundromats here keeps rising despite the fact that we have not approved any new rental developments within the last 10 years. Some people I have spoken to suggested having an established number of conditional uses that we would issue for laundromats. But counsel has come back stating that we cannot legislate a market-driven need. It seems the more laundromats there are, the harder it is for the existing laundromats to maintain its share of the market which in turn provides the existing laundromats less income to reinvest in the upkeep and maintenance of their own establishments, impacting the surrounding neighborhood. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!
    I really like to sit back and let the market sort it all out. uses will come and go. buildings are forever (well, probably longer than the current use). as long as the buildings can be adapted to new uses, it's all good.
    Dude, I'm cheesing so hard right now.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian SGB's avatar
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    Nov 2002
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    Champlain-Adirondack Biosphere Reserve
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    Quote Originally posted by IlliniPlanner
    It seems the more laundromats there are, the harder it is for the existing laundromats to maintain its share of the market which in turn provides the existing laundromats less income to reinvest in the upkeep and maintenance of their own establishments, impacting the surrounding neighborhood. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!
    Welcome to the intersection of community development and market economics. I believe your counsel is correct.

    You can, however, enforce and/or adopt property appearance codes to address upkeep and maintenance issues. (So long as your muni has the staff and political will to enforce them, that is.)
    All these years the people said he’s actin’ like a kid.
    He did not know he could not fly, so he did.
    - - Guy Clark, "The Cape"

  4. #4
    Cyburbian permaplanjuneau's avatar
    Registered
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Juneau, AK
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    151

    dirty laundry v. diamonds and tanzanite

    We have a similar problem here with t-shirt shops and jewelry stores that cater to cruise ship tourists in the summer. They keep their stores up just fine in the summer, but they all board up their windows in the winter and head for warmer climes. We received quite a few inquiries this spring from people who had heard that we had enacted a moratorium on permits for new jewelry stores, but as the other commenters in this thread have said, we can't regulate what a store sells--the market will sort itself out. Too bad this is a seasonal market.

    If IlliniPlanner wants to limit the number of laundromats in an area, I'd say that you could change the zoning regs to prohibit more from opening in that zoning district, which would also make the existing laundries non-conforming uses that couldn't be expanded. This is, however, a stupid thing to do IMHO, since there is probably nothing wrong with having a few laundries in the area, and you don't want to chase them ALL out.

    I think SGB's advice is the best--assuming you can enforce such regulations.

  5. #5
         
    Registered
    May 2006
    Location
    Chicago, Illinois
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    160
    In Chicago they had a similar problem with Hair Places. When they are predominently black and women come in to get hair braided, it takes many hours, and they often use up parking spots so other places don't. So the city set minimum distnaces between salons to prevent critical saturation

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