Bloomington’s plan commission did not take any substantive votes at its Thursday special session, which was dedicated to just one of 10 ordinances currently under consideration to amend the city’s unified development ordinance (UDO).
But the commission did hear about three hours worth of public commentary from 54 different people, about a possible amendment to the ordinance that was on Thursday’s agenda.
The areas of the city affected by the ordinance are commonly called the “core neighborhoods.” In zoning terms, it’s the R1 (residential large lot), R2 (residential medium lot) and R3 (residential small lot) zoning districts.
Whether the plan commission will recommend to the city council that a duplex in the R1 through R4 districts is a permitted (by-right) use, a conditional use, or a completely disallowed use will have to wait until the next meeting of the plan commission.
Tuesday night’s presentation by the city’s development services manager, Jackie Scanlan, included an introduction to the online tools that city planners have built for the project.
Also on Tuesday, Scanlan gave an overview of the mapping project, which comes after last year’s update to the text of the city’s unified development ordinance (UDO).
That text update included the creation of some new zoning districts, like R4 (Residential Urban) and MS (Mixed-Use Student Housing), which don’t yet appear anywhere on the zoning map of the city.
A developer has already requested that the Brownstone Terrace, south of the Indiana University football stadium, be rezoned to MS, so that it can be replaced with a larger student-oriented housing development. That request has been recommended for approval by the plan commission and will appear on an upcoming city council agenda.
During Thursday’s presentation, which focussed on the MS zoning district, Scanlan said it’s important to proactively rezone parcels to MS, based on the city’s comprehensive plan, and not just respond in a reactive way to petition requests.
Councilmembers Steve Volan (left) and Jim Sims (Dave Askins/Beacon)
Brandt Stiles, Collegiate Development Group (Dave Askins/Beacon)
Bloomington’s city council voted Wednesday night on proposed zoning for a student-oriented housing development at the site of the current Motel 6 on North Walnut Street. The outcome was 3–5–1.
That is, it got three votes in favor, five against, and one abstention from the nine-member council.
That tally defeated Collegiate Development Group’s proposal for planned unit development (PUD) zoning, to accommodate a 750-bed development at the site.
The bedroom count had been trimmed, from 820, in the week since the council’s land use committee met for a second time on the proposal. The committee’s vote on its recommendation to the full council was 0-1-3. The reduced number of bedrooms was a result of slicing the top floor off one of the buildings. Based on the formula used by CDG to calculate its contribution to the city’s housing development fund, the bedroom reduction dropped the amount from $2.46 million to $2.25 million.
Initial proposal from Collegiate Development group, with parking in front of the building.
Revised proposal based on land use committee feedback without parking in front.
Last Wednesday (Aug. 28) the Bloomington city council’s four-member land use committee signaled its dissatisfaction with several aspects of a proposed 820-bed student-oriented housing development at the site of the current Motel 6 property on North Walnut.
Three members abstained from the vote (Allison Chopra, Steve Volan and Chris Sturbaum) and one voted outright no (Isabel Piedmont-Smith) on the committee’s recommendation.
The committee’s roll call left the proposal with no votes of support, as it heads to back to the full council’s agenda. The full council will be considering the proposal as a second reading this Wednesday (Sept. 4).
Collegiate Development Group is requesting planned unit development zoning (PUD) for its site plan—that’s why it’s in front of the city council, even after receiving a recommendation of approval from the plan commission in mid-June. Zoning is enacted through ordinances, so PUDs have to go through the city council.
Part of the mix in the PUD proposal is a proposed donation to the city’s housing development fund of around $2.46 million, and the funding of an additional bus route in the Bloomington Transit fixed-route system.