- Special Sections
- Public Notices
The Elizabethtown Planning Commission now has more flexibility when dealing with developments in older parts of the city.
Elizabethtown City Council approved creation of a transition overzone Monday. An overzone would be placed over another zone with the property affected maintaining its prior zone, according to Planning Director Ed Poppe.
Poppe said the zone likely would be applied to commercial areas in the city’s older neighborhoods.
The overzone was proposed to address areas in the city under redevelopment that may struggle to meet modern zoning standards, which are geared toward new development.
Poppe said areas that could be reviewed for a possible overzone designation include Dixie Avenue between North Miles Street and St. John Road and North Mulberry Street between West Poplar and French streets.
No properties have been identified for the overzone yet, but Poppe said the designation would give the commission a mechanism to consider projects and properties on a case-by-case basis. Poppe said a public hearing is required before an area could be placed into a transition overzone.
Zoning changes approved Monday ease regulations on downtown parking, too. The city does not require a downtown business to offer off-street parking for customers, but a business owner must meet all parking standards set by the city if they desire a parking area, Poppe said.
The new language strips this requirement and simply recommends the standards. If they cannot be met, the city will allow the business owner to establish the number of parking spaces its lot will allow.
Other changes include a tweak of sign regulations allowing larger signs for certain retail outlets while another change would allow churches on certain streets to use electronic signs, Poppe said.
The council also approved first reading of an ordinance requiring a four-way stop at the intersection of Dolphin and Mary T. Meagher drives after a debate about its necessity last week.
Mayor Tim Walker said the city has recorded a series of crashes at the intersection during the past few years and received complaints about numerous near collisions from residents and people who work nearby.
Police Chief Tracy Schiller said the primary reason for the crashes is disregarding posted stop signs. Walker said motorists on Mary T. Meagher Drive assume the intersection is a four-way stop and do not yield to traffic on Dolphin Drive, which does not stop.
Poppe said municipalities typically discourage stops along collector roads, as Dolphin Drive is classified, in order to keep traffic moving. Instead stops are placed on side streets flowing into the collector.
Councilman Marty Fulkerson objected to the first reading. During last week’s discussion, Fulkerson argued a four-way stop could be ineffective if motorists already are running posted signs at the intersection.
A second reading of the ordinance is scheduled for the Dec. 17 council’s next voting meeting.
Marty Finley can be reached at (270) 505-1762 or email@example.com.
In other business