New Industrial Zoning Proposed

Sports Editor

St. Marys Councilors heard a proposal for a new industrial zoning area during Monday’s meeting.

Recommended by the St. Marys Planning Commission, the zoning request consists of adding I-2, light industrial zoning, to the city’s Zoning Ordinance.

The I-2 district is to provide for light industrial/heavy commercial uses and locations which are suitable and appropriate when located next to a residential or commercial zone. 

The city currently has only one industrial zone, I-1, providing wholesale and warehousing uses as well as include fabrication, manufacturing, assembly or processing of materials.

The proposal for developing an I-2 zone stemmed from a public concern from residents on Scott Street. They were concerned with having the former Dennings building and house in front of it — located at 813 McKinley Road — changed into an industrial zone next a residential area. Council heard a request in June to change the zoning to industrial by the St. Marys Board of Education. The Dennings building used to house Tri Star operations and was owned by the St. Marys City Schools District. School property is surrounded by residential areas, so in order to sell the property by public auction and maximize value, the zoning had to be changed.

Law Director Kraig Noble and Superintendent of Community Services and Engineering Craig Moeller  discussed and introduced an I-2 zone. During Monday’s meeting, Noble added that residents around the area have also been notified and a public hearing was held by the planning commission regarding the zoning request on Aug. 27.

With the addition of a zoning district, there has to be an amendment of Zoning Ordinance No. 79-12. The amendment includes commercial business operations or commercial operation with secondary or incidental purpose of retail sales to the general public are permitted in the new zone. Assembly of parts, small appliances, electronic instruments or devices not involving the use of strapping or press operations are permitted as well as wholesale stores, trade schools, offices providing support services to industrial or commercial clients, laboratories or research facilities involving testing or other uses, which do not create offensive noise, vibrations, smoke, dust, odor, heat or glare and warehousing and storage, including mini-storage complexes.

In addition, any I-2 zone that borders a residential zone will be prohibited from shipping and/or receiving between 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., the use of gas or electric material handling equipment is prohibited between 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. and variances are allowed to be applied for and heard before the zoning board of appeals in order to waive those requirements. 

“It prohibits certain commonly-known industrial activities that are in the industrial areas and make it more of an off-like assembly,” Noble added.

Noble said legislation will go through three readings and a public hearing will be held before legislation is passed. 

In correlation with Ordinance 2019-22 to amend Zoning Ordinance No. 79-12, council will also have to pass Ordinance 2019-23, zoning 3.985 acres of land located in part of outlet 16, 813 McKinley Road from R-3, single family residential, to I-2.