The San Antonio Burghal Council on Thursday is appointed to accede zoning changes for dozens of backdrop surrounding the four Spanish colonial missions on the South Side that were appointed as World Heritage sites in 2015.
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Changing the land-use rules for abundant of the alleged World Heritage Absorber Zone, accustomed to assure the breadth from inappropriate development, has abutment from best breadth adjacency associations and agencies, but the abeyant changes additionally face some action from two adjacency groups and some breadth business and acreage owners.
“It’s not aloof about the missions but our opportunities in the South Side,” Councilwoman Rebecca Viagran (D3), whose commune includes the four missions, told the Rivard Report on Monday.
She said the re-zoning efforts, which she and Burghal agents alarm “right-zoning,” additionally aim to alter and strengthen the austere area’s account of businesses.
In backward 2016, Burghal Council accustomed 11 land-use amendments and updates to four breadth association affairs as the aftereffect of symposia and accessible affairs about how to best abutment the missions and surrounding communities. That accomplished affairs to adjust the zoning appellation of backdrop with those accustomed acreage uses and association plans.
Scott Ball / Rivard Report
How a acreage is benumbed determines what affectionate and acuteness of action – residential, commercial, automated – can action on the site. Many of the changes proposed absorb “downzoning,” acceptation that beneath acute uses or abate structures uses will be allowed.
For example, several backdrop benumbed MF-33, which allows up to 33 accommodation units per acre, abreast the missions would be benumbed R-6, for single-family homes, if accustomed by Council. Single-family homes abide on best of those backdrop today, so the zoning change would anticipate higher-density accommodation from actuality congenital in the future. Not all the proposed zoning changes for the breadth are downzoning; some areas would become infill development zones, advised added adjustable for mixed-use projects.
Land adjoining to the celebrated Hot Wells resort ruins, slated to become a Bexar County park, would be afflicted from bartering to infill development to acquiesce for a ample mixed-use project.
The absorber breadth re-zoning has been accurate by the San Antonio Conservation Society, National Esplanade Service, San Antonio River Authority, Lone Star Adjacency Association, Mission San José Adjacency Association, San Antonio Breadth Tourism Council, Blessed Sacrament Academy, and others.
The Hot Wells Mission Reach Adjacency Association, Villa Coronado Adjacency Association, and Alliance for San Antonio Missions accept all submitted belletrist in opposition.
The Planning Commission accustomed the changes. While the Zoning Commission voted 5-3 in favor of the changes, such changes crave six votes in favor, so the advocacy moves to Burghal Council as a denial. Burghal Council gets the final say in all zoning cases.
Some say that the new zoning could advance out baby businesses.
“There is annihilation that is aggressive the World Heritage Absorber Breadth with the zoning,” said Carrol Brown, agent for the Alliance for the San Antonio Missions. “It’s a band-aid attractive for a problem.”
He said that the re-zoning is targeting vehicle-related businesses such as auto adjustment and annoy shops and motels that some accede undesirable for the breadth while announcement large, developer-friendly projects such as the one at Hot Wells. Others are anxious that downzoning will abate acreage ethics for owners attractive to sell.
If a business closes for a year, it cannot reopen afresh as a alleged “non-conforming” use, according to zoning regulations. The tire shops and mechanics in the breadth are slated for downzoning, so if they abutting for a year, they cannot re-open and if they appetite to expand, they are bound by the lower zoning appellation by admeasurement of structure, said Brady Alexander, admiral of the Hot Wells Mission Reach Adjacency Association and affiliate of the Alliance.
“[Downzoning] doesn’t access diversity,” Alexander said.
Compounding these concerns, both Alexander and Brown said, is that the backdrop included in this re-zoning accept afflicted as the action moves forward. Properties in the Brooks Burghal Base breadth accept been removed, as accept some backdrop forth Roosevelt Avenue south of South East Military Drive with owners that accept acerb against the zoning changes.
Many breadth businesses and residences are “non-conforming,” or adverse with the acreage use that is alleged for in the association plan, said Colleen Swain, administrator of the City’s World Heritage Office. All of the 14 hotels aural the World Heritage Absorber Zone, Swain said, already are non-conforming.
“The zoning change doesn’t change annihilation for them,” she said. Those acreage owners can abide to operate, advertise or canyon their businesses on to ancestors members, and advance their properties.
“We don’t appetite the accepted businesses to abutting down,” said Terry Ybanez, admiral of the San José Adjacency Association. She added that she believes the added absorption and advance in the breadth stemming from the World Heritage appellation will access acreage ethics and abolish any abeyant disadvantages from added akin zoning.
Previous and unsuccessful efforts to body a multistory accommodation circuitous beyond from Mission San José allegorize why the adjacency needs protection, she said.
Scott Ball / Rivard Report
For lots that are benumbed MF-33 but are amidst by single-family homes, Swain said, “we can’t stop big projects from bustling up” because current zoning permits such development.
The City’s Planning Department is alive on several association affairs throughout the burghal as allotment of the SA Tomorrow absolute plan. Similar association plan-zoning alignment efforts will anon booty abode beyond the city, but they could booty years to implement, Swain said.
“There’s a faculty of coercion actuality [in the absorber zone] because of the appellation and advancing change,” she said.
That change includes millions of dollars in 2017 band projects, including $13 actor for Roosevelt Avenue, $5 actor for South Presa Street, and addition $5 actor for Southcross Boulevard.
The new zoning is aimed at allegorical advance patterns in the breadth against added neighborhood- and visitor-friendly activities, Swain said, abacus that those patterns were developed by the association during about 40 accessible affairs with Burghal Council, adjacency associations, and stakeholders – not including one-on-one affairs Burghal agents and Viagran’s appointment had with anxious acreage owners.
“This has been a continued time in the making, and it absolutely has been because of association ascribe and concern,” said Viagran.
Alexander beatific a letter to Viagran and added Burghal admiral requesting a adjournment of Thursday’s vote on account of the Alliance and added adjacency groups.
“We appeal for us do it right, not quickly,” he said. “Basically, they’ve abandoned us.”
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