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Thread: Planning Mistakes

  1. #1
    Cyburbian donk's avatar
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    Planning Mistakes

    I am reviewing the approvals my employer has granted from the past five years and have come across a few mistakes we did.

    Here they are

    1) Tim Horton's - we rezoned a property to allow for a drive thru, met all of the requiremnts for the zone, right number of queing spaces and everything else matched the By-law, but is was a mistake. Cars line up down a side street onto the main road (15-20 deep). What a mess



    2) Downtown grocery store. They oriented the store so that a 200 foot long blank wall faces the street, with the front of the store facing the parking lot. it looks ugly and cold. Once again it needed only a minor variance in setback and was approved.




    What mistakes have you made in approving development that met the By-law, but you knew it would cause a problem?

    I'll try to post some pictures in the worst case scenario section of the gallery.

    EDIT - I've added the images.
    Last edited by donk; 03 Jul 2003 at 12:03 PM.
    Too lazy to beat myself up for being to lazy to beat myself up for being too lazy to... well you get the point....

  2. #2
    Not too many that I can think of. A former employee granted approval of a very ugly sign before he left and I still rag on him to this day for the sign.

    There are some actions that our Plan Commission take that have turned out poor, usually related to signs.

    I think that our new Zoning code is a HUGE mistake. In the 4 main business districts there are no permitted uses. They are all conditional. In concept it seems like a nice way to control the types of businesses in these districts, but I just think that as soon as someone gets denied we will get sued.
    Last edited by Repo Man; 03 Jul 2003 at 11:44 AM.
    "I'm a white male, age 18 to 49. Everyone listens to me, no matter how dumb my suggestions are."

    - Homer Simpson

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Originally posted by Repo Man
    I think that our new Zoning code is a HUGE mistake. In the 4 main business districts there are no permitted uses. They are all conditional. In concept it seems like a nice way to control the types of businesses in these districts, but I just think that as soon as someone gets denied we will get sued.
    I would tend to agree with your assessment.

    As for us, it would have to be the machine shed - er, I mean theater, that was approved a few years back. Metal building with a bit of drivit on the front. The land around it should be nice higher-end residential ground, but the building is certainly going to detract from that possibility. Oh - it was also argued that we did not need sidewalks to the theater because "college students don't walk, and parents are going to drive their kids." Within months of it opening there were calls to install sidewalk because of all the people walking on the highway to get to the theater.

  4. #4
    NIMBY asshatterer Plus Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Aug 2001
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    Jukin' City
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    16,474

    Planning mistakes

    Throughout my career elected and appointed officials have consistently made errors and mistakes. One county supervisor even mentioned that he hadn't bothered to read a staff report on an exceptionally controversial project, located in his district no less, but was prepared to vote in favor of the proposal.

    I worked with a planner who once took slide photos of the wrong project site for his presentation. Yes, he was caught--the wrong project site was owned by a commissioner.

    Now, have I ever made a mistake? Not to my recollection....hehe

  5. #5
    Cyburbian
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    Re: Planning mistakes

    We have a parking garage downtown whose site plan several years back showed an attached accessory structure, but no elevation was provided. We now have a lovely full sized and operational lighthouse attached to one of our local megachurch's parking garages. Very tacky. (I had nothing to with this.)

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Plus Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    We had a controversial residential/commercial PUD that the P&D director ordered us to "fast-track" for one of his developer buddies. Needless to say, in the humongous rush to bring it to public hearing, nobody noticed the little teeny clause on the overly-busy plan that gave the developer the option of upping the densities with no public hearing. Way ugly, that one.

  7. #7
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    Our biggest would probably be a public hearing on our wetland ordinance, which was in development before I started working here....and very little development interest input was received.

    The public hearing drew a crowd of over 400, and the first speaker called the ordinance "the greatest land taking since the settlers came and took land from the indians." Looooong night, and a re-write of the ordinance followed.
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

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