LOGAN, Utah — It’s been more than two years since conversations began about rezoning property east of Main Street and south of Garff Wayside Gardens for a new downtown housing project.
In this time, multiple project designs have been suggested and new zoning designations have been created. Both the merits and concerns behind this project have been part of Logan Municipal Council meetings and community conversations.
“This one is kind of a big puzzle,” Russ Holley, the Logan city planner said last Tuesday. “So far staff and planning commission have been trying to figure out the best fit for each piece, and tonight the council gets to join in the fun.”
During last week’s Municipal Council meeting, Holley presented the Logan City Planning and Zoning Commission’s latest recommendation for the rezone, which makes amendments to the rezone request made by the project applicant for the area.
Under current zoning, part of the project area is zoned for Traditional Neighborhood Residential, NR-6, part is zoned Town Center 1, TC-1, and part is zoned Recreation, REC.
The project applicant’s rezone request was to change the REC area, part of Garff Wayside Gardens, and part of the NR-6 area to TC-1. This zone allows for a mix of residential and commercial uses. The remaining NR-6 area would be zoned to MR-20, mixed-residential medium.
In making a zoning suggestion to the council, the planning commission amended the request from the applicant so that the church building on the corner of 200 East and 200 South would maintain its NR-6 zoning and the area of Garff Wayside Garden park would maintain its REC zoning.
Holley said part of the reason planning commission members made this decision was they were concerned about losing green space.
According to Holley, the reason the church building was included in the rezoning request was the NR-6 zoning requires height transitional setbacks for large structures built next to the zone.
“Staff is looking at proposing some new code that would treat churches and other non-residential structures, typically large structures, differently,” Holley said.
If this language was adopted, Holley said height transitional setbacks would not be required when churches were built next to higher-density zones.
The ultimate decision for the rezone will be made by the Municipal Council. Council members may accept, reject or amend the planning commissions suggestions by a majority vote.
There is a development proposed in the area featuring a parking lot, an apartment building, and a few townhomes.
If the area of Garff Wayside Gardens remains in the REC zone and is not rezoned to TC-1, the current project plan will not be compatible with the zoning. If the REC area is rezoned, the developer would still need to acquire the property before the project could continue.
Project applicant Beth Larcher said she and her team have been working very hard to find a solution that will work best for all the stakeholders involved in the project.
If the zoning passed by the council is not compatible with the current project plans, she said they will just have to evaluate the options available to them moving forward.
A public hearing for the proposed rezoning will be conducted during the Logan Municipal Council meeting at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 21. Council members will decide at that time whether or not to rezone the area or continue the discussion to another meeting.