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The regular meeting of the Morris Planning Commission was called to order at 5:15 p.m. this 18th day of April, 2017, by Chairperson Kuchenreuther in the Council Chambers of the Morris Senior Citizens/Community Center.


CALL OF THE ROLL: Roll call was taken with the following members present: Commissioners Rudney, Hoffman, Kurpiers, Wulf and Chairperson Kuchenreuther. Commissioners Granger and Gades were absent. Also present were ex-officio Gullickson, Zoning Administrator Jacobson, and City Manager Hill.


READING AND APPROVAL OF 3/21/17 REGULAR MEETING MINUTES: Commissioner Rudney moved, seconded by Wulf, to approve the minutes of the 3/21/17 regular meeting as received. With all present voting in favor, motion carried.




OTHER BUSINESS: Resignation of Commissioner Hoffman: Commissioner Hoffman resigned after 26 years on the Planning Commission. Kuchenreuther read an appreciation certificate and regretfully accepted his resignation.


Discussion of Central Business District and Performance Standards: Kuchenreuther noted that at the March meeting the Commission questioned if the City Code contained any impediments to development in the Central Business District (CBD). Rudney replied that parking is a big issue for some businesses. Also, disallowing ground floor apartments may be an issue. Kuchenreuther indicated that in the central CBD, she doesn't know if allowing main floor apartments where there could be a business is a good idea.


Kuchenreuther indicated there are two fitness studios in the CBD and questioned where they fit in the Code. Zoning Administrator Jacobson stated he would consider them a professional service. Hill noted that is a good example of a use that is not specifically classified in the Code.


Kuchenreuther asked about the temporary greenhouse that is open in the summer months on Atlantic Avenue. Kurpiers indicated that he feels that is a retail commercial business. Kuchenreuther disagreed and feels it is a greenhouse. Hoffman noted the Commission doesn't want to discourage business.


Rudney noted that automobile repair shops and establishments are listed as conditional uses in the CBD. He questioned if those businesses currently in the CBD obtained conditional use permits.


Kuchenreuther stated she does feel the Commission needs to address solar issues sometime in the future.


Discussion of Central Business District and Performance Standards: (continued)

Hill indicated that there will be a parking variance request at the Planning Commission's May meeting. He noted that if every business in the CBD had the required number of parking spaces, there would be massive amounts of parking in the downtown area. Gullickson asked if on-street parking counted toward the required amount. Hill indicated it does not.


Jacobson indicated he thinks it is good to have the parking requirements when there is brand new construction so that it can be put into the site plan.


The Code currently has language that says that any establishment in any business or industrial district which have paid an assessment for the provision of off-street City parking lots may be exempted from the provisions of the Code which refer to off-street parking. This has never been implemented, and Kuchenreuther feels this should be rewritten.


Hill suggested making a list of items in the Code that need to be updated and the City Council can do a yearly maintenance Ordinance to address those updates.


Kuchenreuther indicated Montevideo has such a vibrant downtown and wondered how Morris could achieve that also. Gullickson noted the trend now is to promote downtowns.


Kurpiers suggested modifying the Use Regulations at the beginning of the Central Business District in the Code to make it more inviting. Kuchenreuther suggested also updating the Purpose.


Planning Commissioner Training: Hill indicated the League of MN Cities does not provide in-person training sessions anymore, however there is online training available. Information for that online training will be provided at the next Planning Commission meeting.


ADJOURNMENT: There being no further business, Commissioner Rudney moved, seconded by Hoffman, to adjourn. Motion carried and the meeting adjourned at 6:10 p.m.

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