Council okays special permit
City council members voted on Thursday, May 19, to allow a developer to build multi-family dwellings intended for short-term rental in an area between Avenue A and Cotter Boulevard and west of Oleander Street.
Because the request for a special use permit requires a city ordinance, Thursday's approval was only on the first reading. Ordinances require three public readings at city council meetings before they're official.
Short-term rentals are permitted in R-2 zoning, which is the zoning the area now carries. However, R-2 doesn't allow multi-family units, which is what developer Tom Culp wants to put in the area.
To get that, he had to ask for a special use permit from the city, effectively letting him apply a tourist zoning to the tract of land.
Culp's proposal shows 21 units on the property. Access would be from Farley Street to the west and Roberts Street to the northeast. There is a proposed density of 8.99 units per acre, according to the property layout.
The property, formerly part of the Island One Marine tract, caused debate in the city council earlier this year when owner Doug Frank asked that an alley that runs off Avenue A and dead-ends into the property fence be vacated. Frank said the alleyway might be useful later as access to the property or for a hike and bike path.
The council declined to vacate the alley but required a utility easement up it from property owners on either side.