Bush Farm owners protest rezoning on K-32

October 14, 2015

The city of Edwardsville is aiming for uniformity in zoning along Kaw Drive, otherwise known as Kansas Highway 32, but the rezoning of a well-known property has met with a protest petition.

The city’s planning commission recommended rezoning five tracts of land from 11101 to 11381 Kaw Drive from a light industrial zoning to a commercial zoning. But the Bush family, owners of the majority of the property, which has been known as the Bush Farm, filed a protest petition with the city, and the Edwardsville City Council Monday decided to table the item to give it further consideration.

Dave Knopick, city planner, explained that the city’s intent was to ensure that the zoning for properties along Kaw Drive/K-32 matched what is called for in the city’s future land use plan. He said when he council denied a request to rezone a property to the east from commercial to light industrial, it prompted city staff to double check for inconsistencies in zoning along Kaw Drive.

Knopick and Michael Webb, city manager, said as far as they can tell, the property in question was zoned light industrial at least 30 years ago because it was directly north of a sand plant that has that zoning. Of the properties, 11101 is the Lake of the Forest community garden; 11115 is the Bonner Springs lift station for the Lake of the Forest sewer line; 11131, 11301 and 11381 include one residence and the Bush Farms fields.

The properties to the east and west, Plaza West I and II and Midwest Auto Direct, are zoned commercial.

Under the current I-1 Non-Hazard Industrial zoning, permitted uses include construction, service yard warehousing, storage, freight depot, manufacturing, repair of vehicles and machinery, and wholesale and retail sales of machinery, farm supplies, manufactured housing units and storage buildings. Any development would be subject to the requirements of the K-32 Overlay District the city created in 2006, so higher-end building materials would be required and truck delivery bays would have to be screened from the street view.

Ryan White, legal representation for the Bush family, told the council Monday that the family felt a rezoning would cause undue hardship on their ability to market the property, causing them to file the protest position.

Because of the petition, approving the rezoning would require a “yes” vote from five of six governing body members. With Councilman Chuck Adams absent at Monday’s meeting, the vote would have had to be unanimous among the council members present.

The council also had the option of sending it back to the planning commission or overturning the planning commission’s recommendation, but Councilman Craig Crider said he would like more time to review the rezoning. His motion to table the item until the Nov. 9 meeting was approved.

The council Monday also considered a purchase of equipment for its growing public works department. The council approved acquisition of a 2014 John Deere Skid Steer Loader and a resolution authorizing the financing over four years, with estimated annual payments of $12,585.

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