MINUTES - PLANNING COMMISSION -
REGULAR MEETING - FEBRUARY 18, 2014
Regular Meeting of the Morris Planning Commission was called to order at 5:15
p.m. this 18th day of February, 2014, by Chairperson Kuchenreuther
in the Council Chambers of the Morris Senior Citizens/Community Center.
OF THE ROLL:
Roll Call was taken with the following members present: Commissioners
Rudney, Hoffman, Kurpiers, Livingston, and Chairperson Kuchenreuther.
Commissioners Granger and Gades were absent. Also present were Ex-officio
Miller and City Manager/Zoning Administrator Hill.
AND APPROVAL OF 1/21/14 REGULAR MEETING MINUTES: Commissioner Rudney moved,
seconded by Livingston, to approve the minutes of the 1/21/14 Regular Meeting
as presented. Motion carried.
Hearing on New Zoning District (Neighborhood Commercial District), Change of
Zoning Map, and Addition to Performance Standards: Chairperson
Kuchenreuther explained this public hearing is on a proposed zoning district
that is identified as the Neighborhood Commercial District. This hearing
also includes a change in the zoning map along with an addition to the
indicated the Planning Commission wants to hear as many comments as the public
may have. She opened the public hearing at 5:18 p.m.
Stewart, 401 West 9th Street, asked about a ring road around Morris
that was discussed a while back. This road would direct traffic away from
the center of Morris. Kuchenreuther explained that discussion is not
under consideration with this zoning change.
615 East 7th Street, indicated he has a couple of concerns. His
first concern has to do with Subd. 1 Purpose of the proposed ordinance.
It states the uses in this district are restricted to limit adverse impacts on
nearby residential areas. He indicated the businesses were located here
before the residential areas. Kuchenreuther pointed out there are
residential uses behind East 7th Street. She stated the fact
there will be new development across East 7th Street was taken into
asked about the language in Subd. 2 that states no building or land shall be
used and no building shall be hereafter erected, structurally altered, or
converted or enlarged unless otherwise provided herein� Kuchenreuther
explained that as long as a person does not change the footprint or convert the
building into a use that is not permitted, then it is fine.
asked what small scale automotive agencies are that are listed as a permitted
use in Subd. 2.A.12. Kuchenreuther indicated it would be a small business
that does not take up more than 3 lots. Werk asked why he would want to
make any changes to his business. Kuchenreuther pointed out his business
would be grandfathered in, and he would not be required to change his
business. Hill pointed out as long as a permitted use is being conducted,
the building can be altered as long as it conforms to the setback regulations,
commented on the setbacks. He feels the front yard setback at 25� is too
much and feels it could be reduced if businesses used diagonal parking in front
of their buildings. He also feels the sideyard setback should be
asked about Brown Wilbert Vault Company. Hill indicated the only way to
keep their property conforming would be to spot zone it to an industrial
use. He indicated they are a non-conforming use and can continue, however
they would not be able to expand. Werk asked if the City is planning to
accommodate them down the road with some kind of exception. Hill
indicated at this point they do not need anything.
pointed out East 7th Street is a State Aid street and trucks are
allowed to travel down that street. Hill indicated that is correct.
Kuchenreuther indicated businesses with a lot of truck traffic are not being
encouraged to relocate to this area.
indicated this zone is meant to be a compromise between the existing Highway
Business uses and a change to a more Residential area.
Wilcox, 210 Montana, indicated he has lived and done business in Morris for a
long time, and he feels the City is driving businesses out of town. He
commented on the duplexes that are on East 8th Street that were
moved in from Chokio, and how they pertain to #3 of Permitted Uses
(Accessory). Commissioner Kurpiers pointed out those are not single
family dwellings. Rudney pointed out B. Permitted Uses (Accessory) are
just that – accessory uses, and they are different than primary
uses. He also noted the City does not have a limit on the number of
tenants in a rental unit. Hoffman pointed this is the same all over town
and is not unique to this district.
noted the setback requirements, and asked about the sideyard setback of
10�. Hill noted the 10� sideyard setback is the same as in the Highway
indicated he wants a firm commitment from the Planning Commission tonight that
they are going to enforce the screening requirements as listed in Subd.
2.D.6. Kuchenreuther indicated if there is an existing business that is
grandfathered in, screening will not be required. Kurpiers pointed out
different zoning districts have different requirements. Hill noted the
screening requirements proposed in this new zone are the same as in the current
Highway Business zone, except this gives the Planning Commission the authority
to permit a lesser degree of screening.
Hoffman explained there has never been any intention of trying to run anyone
out of town. He indicated he feels the new NC District is much less
HB zone. Kuchenreuther indicated the Planning Commission had a lot of
public feedback about the zoning districts after the last hearing, and she
feels the Commission was receptive to the concerns about multifamily
zoning. She feels the Commission has to be cognizant of today and
tomorrow, and it is just trying to do its best. Kurpiers agreed there was
no intent on the Planning Commission�s part to try run anyone out of
town. He reiterated that everything is grandfathered in, and this change
from RM to NC vastly opens up the possibilities for businesses.
Wohlers, 301 East 8th Street, indicated he feels the Planning
Commission has come a long way from last October when this issue first came up,
and feels a reasonable compromise has been developed for everyone. He
questioned how #15 (on and off sale liquor establishments) under Conditional
Use Permits fits in with a residential neighborhood. Rudney indicated
this includes restaurants that serve alcohol. Kuchenreuther indicated
this also would allow small brew pubs that serve food and alcohol. Ex-officio
Miller pointed out this would require a conditional use permit. Hill
noted that language from the Residential District, Highway Business District,
and Central Business District was used when developing language for this new
zone. Kuchenreuther noted that because a conditional use permit is
required for this type of business, hours of operation and other items can be
Lesmeister, 513 East 9th Street, asked what happens if he sells his
business and the new owner wants to change the footprint of the building.
Kuchenreuther indicated that would be allowed if it�s a permitted use and meets
the ordinance requirements. Lesmeister asked if the new owner would have
to make the building conform. Hill noted that would depend on the space
and what it is they wanted to do.
Giese, 307 East 7th, commended the Planning Commission for the hard
work they have done on this issue. He stated he appreciates the Planning
Commission�s work on the new district.
being no further public comment, the hearing was closed at 6:10.
Rudney indicated he didn�t see any changes that need to be made. Rudney
then moved, seconded by Livingston, to send the Neighborhood Commercial
District Ordinance to the City Council. With all present voting in favor,
noted that if the City Council were to make any changes to the proposed
ordinance, the amendment would then come back to the Planning Commission for
review and consideration.
Use Permit Application for Morris Community Church: Hill indicated the Morris
Community Church is interested in purchasing the old newspaper office on East 6th
Street and has submitted a conditional use permit application to use that
facility as a church. This will be on the March meeting agenda.
Line Auction Business:
Hill noted he had an inquiry about starting an online auction business at the
current West Central Implement site on Atlantic Avenue. The issue is that
they are interested in allowing consignment items to be dropped off at their
site to be viewed. This is something that is not addressed in the City
Code. This will be discussed at the March meeting.
ADJOURNMENT: There being no further
business, Commissioner Rudney moved, seconded by Hoffman, to adjourn.
Motion carried and the meeting adjourned at 6:21.