GREENVILLE — The Greenville Planning Commission decided to postpone a decision to rezone a section of W. Washington Street after wanting to look over options.
This decision will also affect the Master Plan.
During Thursday night’s regular scheduled meeting, the commission held a public hearing regarding the rezoning of 918 and 920 W. Washington St. from residential to commercial.
Dr. Kirk Faber, who owns a dentist office at 124 W. Cass Street, is looking to turn the two parcels into a new dentist office in which his daughter plans to also practice.
“Dentistry requires more space than it used to,” Faber said.
Before that can happen, the planning commission, along with the Greenville City Council, will have to approve the rezoning to commercial.
Both lots are located next to Veterans Park across from Dairy Queen.
However, the question was raised how traffic would be affected if an office was placed at this location.
Faber said if he receives approval, he would have a driveway off the entrance to the park and not have people turning into the office off of M-57 (Washington Street).
“I don’t think traffic will be a problem,” said Commissioner Rob Blanding. “There is already a farmers market and Dairy Queen. It’s (almost) already commercial.”
He noted the area is a good spot for rezoning because it’s already on M-57 where Greenville is seeing development.
The commissioners have the option of rezoning the whole area to commercial, rezoning strictly the two parcels as commercial or not approving the request at all.
Tim Johnson of MainStreet Planning said there are about eight topics that are looked at before considering a rezoning project:
• Does the plan meet qualifications of the master plan?
• Have conditions changed since the zone was previously adopted?
• Would the rezoning increase services?
• How would the rezoning effect the environment?
• How would the rezoning impact nearby properties?
• Would the rezoning be an appropriate use?
• If rezoned, others may want to get parcels rezoned as well.
• Could the item be accommodated in another location?
Due to time constraints, Johnson was unable to go over the topics in full and present responses to the commission.
Faber has not submitted plans for the site yet. He is waiting for approval before moving forward.
Assistant City Manager Cameron Van Wyngarden said when looking at the location and nearby parcels, a dentist office may be a nice transition from residential to commercial.
“Continuity is important,” said Gary Bieker, a property owner in the area being considered for rezoning.
He explained there has been development close by such as Spectrum Health Community Hospital, Dairy Queen, Veterans Park and the farmers market.
“(The office) would improve what we could possibly have in Greenville,” Beaker said.
Lisa Holmden, a resident at 922 W. Washington, attended the public hearing to ask how her property would be affected if the rezoning was approved.
“I’m not objecting,” Holmden said, “I am just curious how it would affect us.”
Chairman David Ralph said if only the two parcels were rezoned, there would be a buffer between the residential zone and commercial zone. However, if the whole section were to be zoned commercial, residents could have problems remodeling their homes and more.
Ralph stated rezoning the whole section may not be the best way to go unless Holmden was there to tell the commission that is what she wanted.
“We use it as residential,” she said. “We don’t have current plans to change that.”
The commission moved to postpone the decision until the July 26 meeting to look over options and gather more information.
If the planning commission approves the rezoning, it would then be recommended to the city council for approval.
This affects the Master Plan because the plan has the area zoned as residential.
Tim Johnson of MainStreet Planning said if the commission moved to recommend the plan to the city council and then approved the rezoning to commercial at the next meeting, it would go against what was recommended in the Master Plan.
The commission decided to also postpone the decision to recommend the Master Plan to the city council until later to see if an amendment to the plan has to be made.
In other business, the commission approved …
• The site plan for Green Acres to expand its facility.