With the Town Center Off the Table, Council to Take Up Short Agenda

January 9, 2012

Tonight’s West U City Council meeting is shaping up to be a brief one as council members face a one item agenda.

The only action item the council will consider are minutes from its Dec. 12 meeting.

Council was expected to vote on the second reading of the town center zoning ordinance, but Mayor Bob Fry announced over the weekend that he had asked for it to be removed from the agenda.

“After further reflection on the comments from the public regarding the proposed Town Center Zoning ordinance I have asked the city manager, and he has agreed, to use his ability to remove this item from Monday night’s agenda,” Fry said. “Subsequently, there will not be a vote on this issue on Monday night.”

The city received numerous petition letters through a new Website called “StopWestUGalleria.org.”

West U property owner Vernon Tyger created the Website, which outlines the proposed changes in the zoning ordinance and gives his reasons why he thinks it needs to be stopped. He also encouraged people to sign the petition letter on his site.

Sources close to city hall confirmed Friday afternoon that Fry intended to propose to council that any height increase or allowances for a parking garage be removed from the town center zoning proposal.

Fry also issued a statement Friday morning that he was going to propose adding more restrictions to the height of the buildings and the parking structure.

On Thursday, City Manager Michael Ross sent a letter to all the individuals who sent the petition letter to the city and responded to each point that was made in the letter.

“Please rest assured that the City of West University is NOT planning to spend any tax dollars to rebuild this area,” Ross said in his letter. “While there is a proposal to amend the zoning ordinance, the information you were provided by that Website is misleading and in some cases incorrect.”

Council directed city staff in September to budget $60,000 for a non-residential zoning study for the commercial areas in the city and asked that the town center be rolled into the project.

After hearing positive feedback from residents and property owners during a public hearing on Nov. 7, council decided to move forward with the proposal.

Council is now expected to consider the town center zoning proposal with the non-residential zoning study later this year.

“I strongly believe that council wants to ensure that all of the public has proper notice and opportunity to participate in the process and waiting until later this year will guarantee that,” Fry said.

Council will meet at 6:30 p.m. in the council chamber, 3800 University Blvd.

To view tonight’s agenda, click here.

InstantNewsWestu Staff

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