Commission on Racial Equity in Policing Update
The commission has enlisted the work of the Langdon Group to assist in facilitating their work this year.
The planning department, after considerable work, has developed a new form-based zone (FB-UN3) that is broad in what it allows, focusing on moderate density. The recommendation is to rezone the Fleet Block to this new zone. It is also thought that it could be used to replace the neighboring CB zones in that area. I do not have a problem with the new zone, and it may be very helpful in guiding good development in that neighborhood. And this is a zoning discussion that will later be followed by a separate discussion of how to use the block. However, I strongly believe that the Fleet Block should be developed into a public park. I believe that highest and best use of this land is to create a destination park that this part of the city severely lacks. The surrounding neighborhood continues to grow with both moderate density housing projects as well as commercial businesses. If we are to continue to grow but also retain a high quality of life, public outdoor space will become increasingly valuable and critical for residents. Using existing city land is the best way to create parks. If we do not take the opportunity now, we will not have the opportunity later.
Congregate Care Ordinance (Formerly known as Eleemosynary Care Facilities)
The Inn Between was the original focus on this ordinance to find a proper land use ordinance for facilities that care for the seriously or terminally ill, focusing on the homeless, in this situation. After several years of hard work, the planning department has developed this proposal that would create a capacity ratio of one patient for each 950 sq/ft of the lot size for facilities in the institutional zones. This was a change from the current 25 bed limit. Under this proposal the Inn Between could have up to 60 beds for this purpose based on their 1.3-acre lot (I did not do the math, so I am taking another’s word for this). We are still taking public comment for several weeks so let us know your thoughts.
We passed the ordinance adopting the new city flag. Coming soon to a building near you.
Near the end of the meeting, a caller made a horribly inappropriate comment directed at the mayor. I missed it somehow but need to apologize to the mayor for it not being handled more quickly. City Council public comments are too important for us to allow one careless caller to undermine them. So, we can all be better about protecting the public space for one another.