BY PRESIDENT STAUBER:
The city of Duluth does ordain:
Section 1. That Plate Nos. 29 and 35 of the zoning district maps as contained in the Appendix to Chapter 50 of the Duluth City Code, 1959, as amended is amended to read as follows:
(Reference No. 04094)
Section 2. That this ordinance shall take effect and be in force 30 days from and after its passage and publication.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE: This ordinance provides a zoning change from R-1-c, One-family Residential District and R-1-B, One-family Residential District, to R-3, Apartment Residential District, property located between Mesaba Avenue and East Skyline Parkway, south of 12th Street and west of Fourth Avenue East. The proposal calls for the demolition of the existing Buena Vista Motel and Restaurant and development of 48 condominiums at 1144 Mesaba Avenue. The applicant states that “this rezoning will be in the public interest because it will provide additional housing for Duluth residents.”
The original petition requested R-4, Apartment Residential zoning, but the applicant agreed to R-3, Apartment Residential zoning at the September 13, 2004, Planning Commission meeting. The Duluth City Planning Commission, by a vote of 8 to 3, denied the petition for R-4 zoning and amended the petition to recommend R-3 zoning. This action was based on the following findings:
1.) The proposed R-3 zone is near similarly zoned land. It is adjacent to both an existing C-2 and C-1 zone. R-3 residential uses are allowed in C-1 and C-2 zones, and so this proposed R-3 zone would just extend those R-3 uses east and south to the rest of the site owned by the petitioner.
2.) The proposed R-3 zone has good transportation system access. It is adjacent to Rice Lake Road and Skyline Parkway, which are both arterial roads. Mesaba Avenue and Central Entrance (State Highway 194) are less than one block away. The nearest bus stops to this site are less than one block away. Rice Lake Road adjacent to this property is a three-lane configuration, which allows for a center left turn lane. There is additional right-of-way in Rice Lake Road to allow for any needed expansion in this area.
3.) R-3 zoned land is in short supply in the city. Citywide, only 2% of the land available for development is zoned R-3, according to the October 2002 “Analysis of Housing Development Sites” study conducted by the City of Duluth.
4.) There is demand for apartment and condominium housing in the city according to the 2003 “State of Housing” report published by Saint Louis County and the City of Duluth. Page 9 states “with an aging population and pending baby boomer retirements, there is currently an increasing need for housing choices that provide lower maintenance requirements and upkeep such as townhomes and condominiums.” R-3 zoning allows apartments and condominiums.
5.) Zoning this land R-3 will allow for the construction of additional housing units on an already developed (brownfield) site, rather than expanding out into a “green field” (undeveloped) site. People generally prefer and it is a good land use principle to encourage the redevelopment of sites, when feasible, before developing “green field” sites.
This rezoning has no immediate impact to the tax base because there is no specific project proposed for this site at this time.
Date application received: August 13, 2004
Action deadline: December 11, 2004