Monday, Jun 18, 2018
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Perrysburg: Proposed overlay district put on hold

A proposed downtown overlay district in Perrysburg has been pulled from the city's new zoning code and is to be reconsidered at a later date.

Residents who spoke at a public hearing last week had a number of concerns with the part of the new code that covers the city's downtown. Close to 50 people filled the council chamber, some standing, for the planning and zoning committee meeting. Most left after that part of the discussion ended.

Some residents were concerned about the downtown overlay district's application to homeowners as well as business owners. It seemed more appropriate for businesses, resident Barbara Blem said.

"It really doesn't seem to apply to residences at all," she said, noting that the district would not allow sloped roofs.

John Iacoangeli of Beckett & Raeder, a consultant for the rewrite of the code, said the downtown overlay section of the code refers to buildings with commercial uses on the first floor and is designed to enhance downtown businesses.

"It's really focused on commercial properties," he said.

Councilman Joe Lawless suggested that since people who own and occupy property covered by the overlay district had concerns, that section of the code could be pulled out to be reconsidered separately.

The rest of the committee agreed.

"We can probably assume that's out of the code for the time being," said Tim McCarthy, chairman of the planning and zoning committee.

Some residents were concerned about the extent of the downtown overlay district's boundaries, which would run from the Maumee River to Fifth Street and from the alley west of Walnut Street to the alley east of Elm Street.

"I don't understand why it has to go so far from the main downtown area," resident Ralph Weilant said.

The district boundaries were created last summer when the city was developing an application to the Main Street program, Rick Thielen, administrator of planning, zoning, and economic development, said.

He said the intent was to include the traditional downtown area. The boundaries grew as the plans developed and people wanted the district to include the Commodore Building and the municipal building and to extend the boundary to the river.

Other concerns involved whether residents in the area would be aware of new permit requirements if they wanted to renovate. Mr. Thielen said owners of property in the area would be notified if the code is adopted.

Addressing an earlier concern about the overlap in the area covered by the historic district and the overlay district, Mr. McCarthy said the historic district would take precedence over the overlay district.

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