PRIVATE COUNTY OF ALBEMARLE
PLANNING STAFF REPORT SUMMARY
Project Name: ZTA-2009-08 Body Shops and Towing Services in HI Heavy Industrial District
Staff: Elaine K. Echols, AICP and Ron Higgins, AICP
Planning Commission Meeting: June 9, 2009
Board of Supervisors Meeting: To be determined
Legal Ad: Amend Sec. 28.2.1, By right, of Chapter 18, Zoning, of the Albemarle County Code. This ordinance would amend Sec. 28.2.1 to add body shops and the towing and temporary storage of motor vehicles as by right uses in the Heavy Industry (HI) zoning district.
STAFF PERSONS: Ron Higgins AICP, and Elaine Echols AICP
PLANNING COMMISSION PUBLIC HEARING: June 9, 2009
ORIGIN: On April 14, 2009, the Planning Commission passed a resolution of intent to consider adding the uses of towing services and body shops to the HI Heavy Industrial zoning district. This proposal was partly at the request of an applicant and partly at the request of the staff. At present there are two businesses which are located in the HI Heavy Industrial zoning district with the uses of body shop and towing service. Since these uses are not allowed in the HI Heavy Industrial district, they are requested to be added through this zoning text amendment. The resolution of intent is provided as Attachment A.
PROPOSAL: The proposed text amendment is Attachment B. The uses of towing and storage of motor vehicles are proposed to be added as permitted uses in the HI district.
PUBLIC PURPOSE TO BE SERVED: The changes will help protect the public interest by providing a district in which these uses are consistent with other by-right uses and can be appropriately allowed by-right. At present, both uses are allowed by special use permit in the LI Light Industrial district but not at all in the HI Heavy Industrial district.
The supplementary regulations protect the public interest and safety. These regulations require that vehicles be screened so that they are not visible from any public road or any residential property and that they are limited to locations designated on an approved site plan. For body shops, all storage of parts, material, and equipment must be within an enclosed building and vehicles awaiting repair cannot be visible from a public road or residential property.
5.1.31 BODY SHOP
a. There shall be no storage of parts, materials or equipment except within an enclosed building.
b. No vehicle awaiting repair shall be located on any portion of such property so as to be visible from any public road or any residential property, and shall be limited to locations designed on the approved site plan.
c. Nothing herein shall be construed to limit the authority of the governing body in the review of any special use permit, including, but not limited to, the regulation of hours of operation, location of door and/or windows and the like. (Added 12-7-88)
5.1.32 TOWING AND TEMPORARY STORAGE OF MOTOR VEHICLES
a. This provision is intended to provide locations for the towing and/or temporary storage of collision/disabled vehicles. No body or mechanical work, painting, maintenance, servicing, disassembling, salvage or crushing of vehicles shall be permitted; except that the commission may authorize maintenance and servicing of rental vehicles in a particular case;
b. No vehicle shall be located on any portion of such property so as to be visible from any public road or any residential property and shall be limited to locations designated on the approved site plan. (Added 6-6-90)
ADMINISTRATION / REVIEW PROCESS: No impacts are expected which would change administration of the zoning ordinance or development review process. It will allow two existing uses to be “by-right”. Any expansion of these uses or establishment of new uses will be subject to zoning clearance and site plan review where physical changes are proposed.
HOUSING AFFORDABILITY: The proposed changes do not have an effect on housing affordability.
IMPLICATIONS TO STAFFING / STAFFING COSTS: The proposed changes should not have any effect on staffing or staffing costs other than the normal staff time involved in zoning clearance and site plan review which are covered by zoning fees.
DETAILS OF PROPOSED AMENDMENT: As indicated in the staff report for the resolution of intent, staff believes that towing service and body shop uses were inadvertently omitted from the list of uses in the HI district when that district was created. The intent of the HI district is as follows:
HI districts are hereby created and may hereafter be established by amendment to the zoning map to permit industries and commercial uses which have public nuisance potential and will therefore be subject to intensive review for locational impact on surrounding land uses and environment.
Uses and lands previously established in industrial general (M-2) and certain industrial limited (M-1) districts, where in conformity to the comprehensive plan, shall be encouraged to develop as active centers of employment on individual sites.
It is intended that HI districts may be established in areas having all of the following characteristics:
o Areas served by a major highway, rail or air service, or secondary road improved to standards approved by the county;
o Areas either served by public water and sewer or meeting requirements of the local office of the Virginia Department of Health; and
o Areas having clearly demonstrated suitability for intended uses with regard to physical characteristics and relationship to surrounding development
In addition, towing services and body shops are allowed by special use in the Light Industrial district, but not allowed at all in the Heavy Industrial district.
The proposed amendment adds uses to the HI district which staff considers typical of those expected in the district and consistent with other by-right uses in the district. Uses in the HI District are generally not compatible with residential uses; however, they are important uses to a community. For this reason, HI zoned properties are fairly limited in the County. (See Attachment C.) Furthermore, the supplementary regulations along with the setback and buffer requirements of Section 26, Industrial Uses Generally, help protect adjacent residential properties that are adjacent to industrial zoning. A 100-foot setback and 30 foot buffer is required for industrial districts adjacent to residential districts. The supplementary regulations (provided above) require screening and that all work be conducted indoors. For the by-right uses in the HI district, the supplementary regulations in Section 5.1.31.c. and the following Section 5.1.32.a. would not apply:
No body or mechanical work, painting, maintenance, servicing, disassembling, salvage or crushing of vehicles shall be permitted; except that the commission may authorize maintenance and servicing of rental vehicles in a particular case;
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Staff believes the proposed amendment represents needed changes to the ordinance and recommends adoption of the ordinance amendment contained in Attachment B.
Attachment B: Proposed ordinance amendment dated 5-22-09
Attachment C: HI Heavy Industrially Zoned Properties in Albemarle County
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