GREENVILLE — The Greenville Planning Commission recommended to City Council the approval of language changes to downtown residency regulations, which would make it easier for upstairs rental units downtown.
During a Thursday meeting, the commission moved the request along to council, which will hold a public hearing Tuesday on the matter. This follows months of discussion on occupancy requirements in the Commercial-3 (C-3) zone, which would allow more decision making to building owners.
“This matter would delete the requirement that upper-story residential dwellings in the C-3 zone, which is downtown, have to get a special use permit,” City Planner Tim Johnson said in a previous meeting. “It would take those requirements out of the ordinance and replace it with Section II in your draft that says those types of uses would be permitted in the C-3 zone subject to certain criteria.”
Those requirements would be lessened if the language changes are approved by council.
The dwelling still could not exist on the main level and must have direct access to units with a doorway on the outside of the building with a separate doorway than that used to access the main floor. Two parking spots must be available, but this requirement can be fulfilled by city parking lots.
The amendment would remove the criteria stating a dwelling shall not exist on the same level as a commercial or office space, leaving that decision up to the building owner and occupants.
Officials said it should not be up to the city to decide whether a residence and businesses could operate on the same level, if agreed to by both parties.
The changes would mean upstairs occupancy would be a permitted use requiring zoning administrator approval instead of going before Planning Commission.
The goal is to make it easier for development, while putting more decision making in the hands of building owners.
Single-family residences in the C-3 zone would not be affected by the proposed language changes.
In other business, the commission scheduled a Aug. 28 public hearing for proposed amendments to clarify terms and requirements for nursing homes, assisted living and foster care facilities.
The proposed amendment simply clarifies the meaning of adult nursing home and deletes the use of a nursing home in the Residential-1 and 2 (R-1 and R-2 respectively).
“Those uses would still be permitted in the in the R-3 zone, the office zone and the C-2 (commercial) district,” said City Planner Tim Johnson.
If in the R-3, the minimum lot size for an adult foster care would be three acres and one acre in all other zones. The amended language would also require facilities monitor the buildings’ entrances and exits.
“I thought it was good to set a definition for an adult foster care facility,” said Commissioner Linda Collins. “Before, it seemed like it was intertwined and it wasn’t real good.”