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Thread: Commercial encroaching on residential (was: Help me understand zoning...)

  1. #1

    Commercial encroaching on residential (was: Help me understand zoning...)

    Live in a township governed by a town board. The area I live in is residential (a 4 block area of homes), some of the homes are in the flood plain. The area is actually an island. The bottom of the island is commercial, and the area bordering the river is commercial up to a point where the residential neighborhoods start. There is a boat manufacturing facility with a restaurant. The boat manufacturer has bought three properties. One is adjacent to his property that is zoned light industrial. The other two properties are across a county road and are part of a residential block of homes. Here is the problem….the boat people have requested that the properties all be zoned commercial for the purpose of building a parking lot and their insurance demands. The restaurant plans to operate a boat tour. The boat people state additional parking is needed for this. 2 of the homes will remain on the residential properties and be rented out and the parking lot will be built to “butt up” to the homes. Access to the parking lots will be through the alley. The other home that is now zoned industrial will be taken down and a parking lot will be built (this is adjacent to their property). The local planning committee passed this request with conditions despite a petition that was signed by 23 neighbors stating no. The committee stated that it would actually improve property values because the industrial property sold for more of the market price, the intention is to have all of the area in our location commercial someday (not in the land use plan), and because the property is in the flood plain it is a better use of the property. Also, it would take parking off of the street.
    The zoning request still has to be approved by the County, but generally if the town approves, it is a go.
    I still plan on voicing my objection at the county level. I am naïve enough to think the intention of zoning is to protect from this type of thing where you have commercial entering into a residential neighborhood. Can I possibly put up a good fight? Is this proper zoning?

  2. #2
    NIMBY asshatterer Plus Richmond Jake's avatar
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    What is the comprehensive plan land use designation of the subject properties? Does the proposed zone change implement and is it consistent with the comprehensive plan land use map?

    Review the text of the comp plan to see if it contains policies concerning compatibility between adjacent and nearby uses. Look for policies that contain language regarding the preservation and protection of existing neighborhoods.
    I don't do anything right.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by RichmondJake View post
    What is the comprehensive plan land use designation of the subject properties? Does the proposed zone change implement and is it consistent with the comprehensive plan land use map?
    RJ's on the right track. Wisconsin requires that zoning decisions be consistent with an adopted comprehensive plan under the Smart Growth legislation. This does not prevent the Town (or County) from amending the plan prior to rezoning, but that does add a step to the process.
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  4. #4
    Thank you! I have reviewed the town's land use plan and the area within the plan is still residential. I should be able to present solid reasoning as to why this should not be rezoned quoting the land use plan...I now have a plan. Again, thanks for steering me in the right direction.

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