City planners OK new Inman zoning district
by JOYANNA LOVE Banner Senior Staff Writer
Mar 19, 2014 | 704 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Cleveland Municipal Planning Commission members approved a new “Inman Street East Zoning District” for the downtown thoroughfare from Bible to Hill streets during a meeting Tuesday.

The change will go to the Cleveland City Council for final review and potential approval.

The new zoning district would change the setback requirements to allow more buildings on each lot and allow them to be closer to the road.

City planner Corey Divel said the setback from the road right of way would be five feet. He said this would bring the area more in line with existing buildings in the downtown area.

The staff report supporting the creation of the new zone stated, “The current zoning is CH [Commercial Highway] and due to the size and shape of the existing lots along this corridor there is very little practical applicability for these lots to be used once setbacks and impervious requirements have been met …The ROW [right of way] along the eastern portion of Inman varies widely from [55 to 90 feet], leaving ample room for future improvements.”

Divel said this section of Inman “has way more right of way then we would need.”

No new construction was approved as a part of the creation of the new zoning district. Rather, the new district creates the opportunity for further development and redevelopment.

“I’m all for the development of east Inman Street. That’s where I was raised. I am hoping this will help in some way, [but] that’s not the CBD [Central Business District] over there. It’s a major thoroughfare,” Planning Commission member Larry Presswood said.

He made the motion to approve the creation of the zoning district and it was approved unanimously.

The Planning Commission’s hope is that the changes will encourage redevelopment and make the area a “gateway into downtown.”

Presswood asked why Hill Street was chosen as the end of the zone. Divel said it could potentially be extended in the future.

The changes will not affect existing buildings.

City development and engineering director Jonathan Jobe said the plan for establishing the zoning district started with a meeting of business owners, residents and pastors in the area.

Jobe said the guidelines for the district was a compilation of “some of their ideas and some of ours.”

Although not yet approved, architectural drawings have been created to outline a narrowing and sidewalk project for the section of Inman.

Making the section of Inman Street a three-lane road with sidewalks was discussed. Jobe said the city was in discussion with the Tennessee Department of Transportation as to whether the road could be narrowed.

“TDOT has the final say on that,” Jobe said.

Individual projects will come before the planning commission at a later date.

The planning commission also passed a site plan and variance approval for property in Stonebriar subdivision, the final plat of Lot 8 of Brookstone Townhomes, infill development at 145 High St. N.E. and setback approval of lot 19 in Timber Creek subdivision.

A rezoning request for a 56th Street property from RA Residential Agricultural to R2 Low Density Residential was also approved to go before the City Council.