Thursday, August 28, 2014

Awkward juxtapositions


The most basic of several reasons I've been suspicious of the new CZO is I always thought that "awkward juxtapositions" were what made urban life interesting.
Meanwhile groups representing some Uptown neighborhoods called for changes to the building guidelines for St. Charles Avenue. The ordinance divides the avenue into several zones, each of which has different rules.

“That makes for some awkward juxtapositions, particularly with regard to height and setbacks,” said John Bendernagel. The avenue needs some “mechanism of broad oversight” that will consider it in totality, he said.
It should be possible to simplify the zoning rules without also enforcing a bland sense of uniformity on our neighborhoods.  Cities are place where you find bars next to churches next to houses next to grocery stores next to.. breweries, even.
Residents who attended Tuesday’s hearing mostly applauded the commission’s staff for their work in taking on the monumental task, but they still recommended a few tweaks to the ordinance.

Scott Wood, who owns Courtyard Brewery, asked that breweries be listed as permitted uses in more business and commercial zones, instead of being restricted largely to industrial areas. The wide range of brewing techniques doesn’t restrict the process to an industrial setting, Wood said.

Before moving forward with a plan for a brewery on Erato Street, Wood said, he had to go through the long process of requesting a conditional use from the commission and the council.

He said he hopes the zoning ordinance will permit breweries in more areas so the industry’s growth isn’t stifled.

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