After being dormant for a few months, several community-proposed amendments to the Lower Greenville Modified Delta Ordinance will be considered by the City Plan Commission May 11.

The Modified Delta Ordinance was passed a few years ago for the Lower Greenville area to cut back on the availability of Delta credits. Delta credits are parking bonuses that allow for less than the code-required parking for older buildings. By cutting back on these credits, City planners are trying to chip away at the area’s parking problems, as the Delta credits seemed to have worked too well to spur redevelopment, the original intention.

The proposed fine-tuning amendments, the result of months of work by a neighborhood and business task force, would require replacement of paved-over, head-in parking; require one parking space to be provided for every 300 square feet of outdoor seating if a property owner wants a license to use public right-of-way (that is, the sidewalk); remove the special exception allowing the Board of Adjustment to grant a 25 percent reduction in the number of required parking spaces; and add criteria to demonstrate “extreme circumstances” authorizing the Board to restore Delta credits after 12 months of discontinued use.

Similar amendments may also be adopted in the future for the Henderson Avenue area. Also under preliminary consideration is some type of “urban design” effort for Lower Greenville. The City Council may consider the amendments as soon as May 24.

MORE TO COME FOR 99: It looks like the Plan Commission on will call a public hearing May 11 on amendments to Planned Development District 99, along Gaston from Fitzhugh to the Lakewood Shopping Center. A group of residential and commercial property owners has made substantial progress on proposed modifications and is ready for City staff assistance. Once the hearing is authorized, another few months of work is anticipated before the actual public hearing at the Plan Commission.

REZONING FOR FIESTA: Also May 11, the Plan Commission is scheduled to consider the first of two companion zoning change applications, which are both related to the redevelopment of the Old Ross Avenue Sears site as a Fiesta Foods and retail strip. The first is for rezoning of two lots now zoned multi-family at the southwest corner of Hudson and Hope to community retail. The applicant, Ross/Henderson Development Group L.L.C. wants to make the existing surface parking use a conforming use, most likely for employee parking.

The second case, to be heard by the Commission June 11, is one three and one half lots in the 4300 block of Rowena off Henderson and is also for a change from multi-family to community retail, apparently for the same purpose. Not known yet is whether any controversy will arise, particularly over the Hudson and Hope site.

FINAL APPROVAL: On April 12, the City Council gave final approval to three East Dallas zoning cases: the small truck parking facility at 404 South Fitzhugh, the Specific Use Permit for a mini-warehouse at Thomas and Central (near Cityplace and the Roseland Homes), and the much-delayed Specific Use Permit for a dance hall for Cowboys Nightclub at Gaston and East Grand.

POSSIBLE TERMINATION: The Board of Adjustment had four compliance cases scheduled for hearing April 25 at 4814-4832 Gaston. The non-conforming uses include a small grocery store, two bars and a liquor store. If the Board votes to terminate the uses, they will be given an amortization period, probably six months, to shut down or become conforming. The property owners can apply for a zoning change to become conforming, which would delay the compliance date, or contest the termination in state District Court.

TESTING THE WATER: The owners of the property which is the former site of the Greenville Avenue Christian Church on the east side of Greenville at Llano, have put out some feelers to the surrounding neighborhoods about potential uses for the site, now zoned for single-family residential. Since the old church burned down, another development effort has been widely expected. Predicting a possible outcome would be speculation at this point, but we will follow the story as it develops.

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