The Pinedale Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission continued ongoing talks surrounding overhaul of the Town’s parking ordinance at its regular meeting Monday.
P&Z Administrator Kate Grimes plans to have a draft ordinance – using suggestions going back to October – available at the April or May meeting.
The meeting focused on use requirements before eventually moving in a number of different directions and touching on many parking mandates.
The Town’s previous ordinance was far too specific in breaking down building use requirements in commercial districts. Much of that was simplified. The Commission also wanted to ensure language specifying parking decisions would be issued on a case-by-case basis.
To further solidify an ordinance, Grimes wants to distribute surveys to businesses to find out how many customers, employees and others use parking areas. These numbers will be compared to future ordinance requirements.
From that point on, the discussion turned as Wind River Brewing Company (WRBC) representatives brought up a broader array of topics.
A primary concern is the section of Pine Street near the Pinedale Post Office and WRBC. This area, often described as a safety hazard with a lack of parking, is not in the proposed downtown district, where parking would be exempt for commercial properties due to the wealth of off- and on-street parking.
Pub representatives squabbled with the Town about parking last year, and WRBC was told to provide additional parking for customers.
As it stands now, WRBC would be one of the only prominent “downtown” businesses required to add parking, as the pub is currently remodeling and would not be grandfathered in to, nor in compliance with, a new ordinance.
“It seems completely discriminatory,” P&Z member Barbara Boyce said.
The post office’s parking was also brought up; it is currently required to provide one parking space for every 350 square feet of building space.
“Yet they can add as many boxes in that same square footage,” WRBC co-owner Tamra Watts said. “They can double their clients without adding any parking.”
Watts and WRBC General Manager Greg Mottashed said parking should be up to customers to dictate. If not enough is provided, customers would choose not to frequent the business, they said.
This took the conversation to shared parking, an issue discussed a couple months ago. The Commission backtracked and said they’d like shared parking to be up to 1,200 feet, or approximately three blocks. At this distance, pub patrons could park on Lincoln Street, which has numerous off-street parking and is in the proposed downtown district, WRBC reps pointed out.
Any new businesses, or those building an addition, would have to comply with a future ordinance or apply for a parking waiver, which would have to be approved by the Town.
The Commission decided to revisit more parking issues at its next meeting, when a draft ordinance is available for review.
“It seems like this discussion is not really over,” P&Z member Janet Bellis said.
Also at the meeting:
• The Commission will recommend vacating and re-platting lots near Rendezvous Pointe.
Sublette County would like to vacate Flintlock Avenue, which is actually covered by the Rendezvous Pointe parking lot, and then the County would “recreate” Musket Avenue by moving it 60 feet. It would go from Magnolia Street to Faler Avenue.
The area is slated for senior housing.
Infrastructure has been added in the past two years, and after a meeting with Town of Pinedale Engineer Eugene Ninnie, all standards have been met, according to Dennis Fornstrom of Rio Verde Engineering.
• The Commission conditionally approved recommending a subdivision re-plat request from Grace Sulenta for lots between Pine and Hoback Streets and North Ashley and North Jackson Avenues.
Sulenta is requesting a lot split to accommodate some other development at the site, including a Family Dollar at the front, and potentially a Rio Verde expansion at the back of the lot, Grimes said at the meeting.
“They are proposing an easement on the west side there as an access easement, basically to use the curb cut, the driveway that you go into Napa [Auto Parts]. They would use that driveway to go into the parking lot,” Grimes added.
The Commission approved the measure, contingent upon the business owners filing a written agreement on easement use prior to formal approval at the next Town Council meeting.
• The next meeting is tentatively scheduled for April 2 at 6 p.m. For the complete article see the 03-09-2012 issue.
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