By Paul van Orden
DRAFT – NOT YET APPROVED
Eliot Land Use Meeting for January 20, 2014
Paul van Orden
Nan Stark, City Planner with Bureau of Planning and Sustainability
Not present tonight:
Agenda Item one:
Discussion with City Planner Nan Stark On Comprehensive Plan input from Eliot Neighborhood
The land use committee had a robust conversation about the rare opportunity for the Eliot Neighborhood to offer input back to the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability on the direction for zoning in our neighborhood in the next few decades. Mike Warwick had already turned in our first comments on the Comprehensive Plan prior to the meeting. Nan Stark, a uniquely knowledgeable and helpful City Planner from the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS), was present to help the Eliot Land Use Committee to better explore the comments that Eliot had already offered to the City Planning agency.
Mike Warwick explained the general overall plan. The first component that we were looking to focus on is rezoning the majority of all the areas that were classic old historic housing stock from R2 or R2.5 to all R 2.5. There were a few exceptions in Mike’s initial input for the R2.5 zoning that he sent to BPS. There was an effort to move away from the odd high density zoning that was in the neighborhood with the use of RX, EX.
Phil had specific questions about what the group was trying to accomplish along Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard. Phil noted that the EX will allow a mix of residential and commercial but has some challenges in its scale for Eliot. Nan Stark explained that the EX zone was originally intended focus on “Employment” . It is a classic example of a mixed use zone. Phil and other folks were very interested in letting the Planning Bureau know that we want to see some more options to have dense zoning options but that EX and RX are not generally appropriate in Eliot. Phil wanted to explore further the implications of our suggests for MLK and he noted Williams as well.
A tangential conversation on the zoning near the recent multi-story building that burned down ensued. The conversation was regarding the zoning of adjoining properties. No specific changes to the information that was already supplied to Planning in the Comp Plan to explore the need to save the
As an Important Note to Eliot Neighbors Nan Stark noted that that at this point the City Planning Bureau are specifically dealing with the Comp Plan ONLY and that that is different than dealing with OVERLAYS and the Zoning Maps. Nan reminded Eliot that we have proposed is a housing overlay approach.
Nan said the Planning Bureau will also have a new Mix Use Zoning project that will really look at the possibility of new zoning classification to better address the challenges close in neighborhood as are facing.
Nan said that Eliot was the only neighborhood City-wide that offer the City such a holistic approach to addressing smart growth in our neighborhoods.
Nan and Mike Warwick will be looking to walk through he neighborhood in the coming week to more closely look at the actual implications for our suggestions.
Nan had inquired about the old homes that have been lost to date. Mike Warwick noted that Bill Reed was a big part of the existing loss of old homes in the neighborhood. They were going for a walking tour one upcoming morning at 7:30 AM.
Paul inquired of Nan what portion of the dialog is staff driven and what point will we have an ability to offer input. in particular Paul asked if we dis agreed with staff would we have an opportunity to testify to City Council about our concerns. Nan said yes will get a chance to voice our concerns to planning Commission first and then to City Council.
The Board said that it wanted to send a clear signal to Emmanuel on the vacant properties along Williams and to see the zoning encourage residential use happen more quickly to respect the past record.