F’ville OKs downtown mixed uses

The Oct. 4 approval to amend Fayetteville’s zoning ordinance will make it easier to have mixed use development in the downtown Main Street district. The amendment cleared up language that had unintentionally discouraged a residential component in the downtown zoning district.

The amendment allows for residential and non-residential uses to be combined in one structure, with residential uses located above the first floor and no more than 10 residential units located within any mixed-use building. In the absence of a second floor it would be possible for the residence to be situated in the rear of a commercial building, according to the amendment.

Director of Community Development Brian Wismer in the second reading Oct. 4 said city staff earlier this year discovered language in the ordinance that inadvertently discouraged residential and mixed-use development in the Main Street Historic District. The amendment corrects that language, Wismer said.

As for square footage, studio apartments or condos must be at least 600 square feet in size, one-bedroom units must be a minimum of 700 square feet and two-bedroom units must at least 900 square feet. Units with three bedrooms must be at least 1,100 square feet while those with four bedrooms required at least 1,400 square feet.

Wismer prior to the vote said zoning currently allowed mixed uses but requires a minimum of 1,200 square feet. Amending the ordinance would allow for more flexibility and would address virtually any possible scenario that could arise dealing with living space, Wismer said.

Wismer said the amendment to allow mixed use development downtown was in keeping with the city’s comprehensive plan.

Consultant Kenneth Bleakly at the Oct. 4 town hall meeting in Fayetteville outlines the factors involved in the Nov. 6 city referendum that would permit the redevelopment of aging and failing commercial sites in the city. Photo/Ben Nelms.