Lexington Council committee reviews residential and commercial zone text amendments

Originally published by WEKU.

Lexington city leaders are beginning the formal process of updating zoning regulations. It has implications for specific businesses located near residential areas.

Lexington Senior Planner Hal Baillie told Council members it amounts to a modernization of the zoning ordinance out of the 1980’s into the modern era. The issue was brought forward by General Government Committee Chair Preston Worley who said a major focus is how to address housing.

“We see things like allowing for density bonuses, encouraging workforce housing and affordable housing. This is really important text amendment for all of the future growth, both businesses but also primarily residential and neighborhood uses,” said Worley.

The suggested changes include allowing small conditional distillery operations where micro-breweries are already allowed. Worley said bringing the zoning ordinance in line with new state legislation means removing language that some lawmakers feel gives priority to electric vehicle charging stations over gas stations.

Another proposed change deals with zoning for drive-up and drive-through services at businesses near residential areas. Council Member Hannah LeGris is concerned about the potential for conflict between pedestrians and cyclists near drive-throughs.

“And what I want to do is create more opportunities for more opportunities for people to use multi-modal transportation without that space of conflict to get into the businesses they want to frequent in their neighborhoods,” said Legris.

During the committee presentation, Senior Planner Hal Baillie said a new residential zone is being recommended. He added it has the potential to attract transit to new areas. Baillie said the idea is to get to the required housing density to build out the transportation system and have a more robust walkable community. The full Council is expected to act on the zone ordinance changes in June.

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Originally published by WEKU.

Republished with permission.