SIDNEY — A replat request to create one new lot at Shaffer Metal Fab, on Commerce Drive, was approved Monday evening by the Sidney Planning Commission. Also, the first part of the final draft of the newly revised Sidney Zoning Code was reviewed.
Ferguson Construction, on behalf of Commerce SG Ltd., made the request to replat two lots to create one new lot on the west side of Commerce Drive. The property is located in the I-2, general industrial district, at 2031 Commerce Drive.
The northern lot is currently developed with an industrial building, Community Development Director Barbara Dulworth said. A site plan application is currently under review for a building addition.
The replat will result in one new lot with 5.241 acres. The replat also vacates utility easements on the shared lot line. All other existing utility easements and DP&L easements remain. The new lot meets all zoning code and subdivision regulations for lot size, frontage, and lot depth to width ratio.
In other business, Dulworth then reviewed the first part of the final draft of the zoning code regarding districts and dimensions and development standards for board members. ZoneCo is preparing the final draft after the rough draft is presented to City Council, Planning Commission, the re-write steering committee, and the general public for review and comment, Dulworth said. City staff will be presenting the final draft to the Planning Commission over three sessions to get final feedback. Her hope is for City Council to adopt the new code by by the end of the year.
City staff has been working with consultant, ZoneCo Inc., to simplify and rewrite the code since November 2019. She laid out the differences of existing and proposed changes to the code regulations in an Excel spreadsheet for board members and those attending.
At Monday’s meeting, Dulworth displayed a map and highlighted three proposed district that are going away completely; they include the non-urban, suburban residential and I-1, light industrial districts. The plan proposes adding a new industry/innovation/manufacturing district.
Dulworth then went into several changes to the current regulations in various districts regarding lot dimensions, setbacks, building height, accessory building, parking location and fences (hedge wall), walls and gates.
Board member Aditya Sakhalkar at one point asked what the new zoning code recommendations are based upon. Dulworth said it is based on model codes of similar sized cities as Sidney. She said all that their adviser ZoneCo does is write zoning codes, and so they are aware of what is appropriate for a city like Sidney.
Board member Merrill Asher asked how many buildings in downtown meet the changes in the proposed code. Dulworth said older buildings/developments would be grandfathered in, which are considered legal non-conforming uses.
Also, when asked if they have considered how to ensure the changes are not in violation with other codes. She said a city staff technical committee, which includes Dulworth, the law director, police chief, deputy fire chief, city manager and building inspector, have reviewed these changes.
The next Planning Commission meeting will look at potential code changes for parking lots, landscaping, signs and other development standards for neighborhoods. She asked members to continue to “digest” the proposed changes and send her feedback.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.