City Plan Commission tables decision on PERC zoning

The Wayland City Planning Commission Tuesday evening after a public hearing tabled a proposal to eliminate Planned Enterprise Residential Cluster (PERC) zoning designation.

Only four of the seven commissioners were present to take comments from several people interested in the issue.

Planner Kirk Scharphorn Jr. of Professional Code Inspections earlier this year recommended it be deleted because it is no longer useful. PERC zoning was eliminated along Reno Drive in order to making zoning there more consistent.

But the issue was tabled Tuesday evening because there were only four commissioners present, with Chairman J.D. Gonzales, Ryan Martin and Andrew Shelest absent.

The tabling, however, did not affect swift action to approve a site plan request from Karl Veldheer to put in a 200-unit storage building business at 500 Reno Drive, across the street from general RV and just south of the hardware store.

Commissioners voted 4-0 after reviewing his site plan and viewing pictures of his 10-year business near Sandy Pines. Even with PERC zoning, the site permits B-2, or business.

“”I feel this a good fit for the neighborhood,” said Commissioner Virgil Gleason.

The commission got a variety of opinions about eliminating PERC zoning. Carolyn Cook and Valerie Drummond, who have properties to the south of Sycamore Street near Commerce, both asked to keep things the way they are or go to R-4 residential. They were told every effort will be made to keep their properties in compliance.

Al VanderLaan of B & R Development, said he has properties on Reno Drive Drive that haven’t had troubles with the PERC zoning, but worried that change might cause him problems with potential further development.

He said the best use would be B-2 commercial or light industrial.

Sharphorn explained, “The PERC district ordinance was poorly written. I think we can have it cleaned up to make it better. A Planned Unit Development would let you create your own district. We can list what we want for that area. That’s what a PERC district originally was intended to do.”

Though action on the PERC was not taken, the matter can go before the commission again next month for final action without a hearing.

PHOTO: Al VanderLaan speaks to the Planning Commission about his properties along Reno Drive while new local storage business owner Karl Veldheer (left) and Planner Kirk Sharhorn Jr. listen.

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