The parking lot at 1716 N. Garrett Ave. Photo by Renee Umsted.

The Dallas City Council approved a rezoning request to allow townhomes to be built where there’s currently a parking lot.

The property, which is currently zoned community retail district, is about 0.4 acres and is located at the intersection of N. Garrett Avenue and Ross Avenue.

In January, the City Plan Commission supported the applicant’s request for rezoning to a MF-2(A) multifamily district.

Though City staff had no objection to the applicant’s request, they recommended a WR-3 walkable urban residential district because of the “denser, urban character style neighborhood surrounding the request area.”

Walkable urban residential district is a kind of form-based zoning, which is different from traditional zoning in that development standards are more focused on the form of the structure instead of its intended land use. Buildings are constructed with several stories and are set at the front of the site, closer to the street.

All Council members voted in favor of the rezoning, but some took the opportunity to discuss the benefits of non-traditional zoning such as form-based zoning and how it could be used in the future.

“Though I will support this motion, I really want us to encourage our own plan commissioners to be open to this and to really begin to push the developers toward this,” District 11 Council member Jaynie Schultz says.

District 2 Council member Jesse Moreno, whose district includes the property in question, says he hopes the City takes the time to revisit its urban planning use for Ross Avenue corridor, one of the major streets into Downtown.

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