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The Planning Commission voted unanimously in favor of a conditional use permit to expand the Bella Vista Public Library, as well as for a large-scale development of a second street department sand and salt storage facility at 228 Trafalgar Road.

The commission previously approved the library expansion on the condition that a zoning issue be addressed. Currently, the library is located on R-1 residential property as a legal nonconforming use.

Associate planner Sarah Bingham said that, because libraries are permitted as a conditional use and the plan was already drawn up with existing setbacks, it would be simpler to grant the conditional use permit than to rezone the parcel.

"It would make sense to keep it as an R-1 instead of trying to figure out the right commercial district," she said.

The sand and salt storage development will allow the street department to place a 72-foot by 72-foot storage building, as well as a 32-foot by 16-foot loader shed on the parcel, which will provide a second location for workers to retrieve sand and salt and allow the street department to keep a larger supply of sand and salt in total.

Community development services director Kevin Gambrill said that, while little has changed with the proposal, he did get answers to some questions from the work session.

Previously, members of the commission asked about paving from the storage building to the street, whether standing water would be retained in the drainage pond and whether signs should be installed to warn drivers that trucks may be entering and exiting the facility.

Zach Moore with Garver, the engineering firm handling the project, wrote an Email to address these concerns.

Moore wrote that there is currently a concrete apron at the edge of the road, and pavement will be extended to the apron -- meaning there will be no unpaved section between the road and the facility.

Additionally, he wrote that the pond is designed as a settling basin to catch any debris, including sand or salt leaving the facility. Water will be able to trickle through a riprap outlet, and standing water should not be long-term, he said, and fencing can be placed for safety if required.

He also wrote that there are existing "trucks turning" signs, though more can be added if they are deemed necessary.

Commission member Doug Farner said that there were also some concerns about height.

Gambrill said that, between tree cover surrounding the area and a depression in which the facility will be located, the structure will not be especially visible.

"It's not as though you're going to be looking at a majority of it," he said.

The commission voted unanimously in favor of both items before adjourning at 6:43 p.m.

General News on 07/11/2018

Print Headline: Commission makes approvals

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