Thursday, May 14, 2009

TON Commissions and Board

Isn’t the number seven supposed to be considered lucky? If so, the following groups must have good luck because each one consists of seven members appointed by the Mayor and Council.

The Planning Commission hears requests for zoning amendments regarding development. This commission heard 26 cases in 2008, denying two of them (although they were approved by Council). Requests included new businesses at the Constitution Trail Centre (tires and food), apartment complexes, buildings at Heartland Community College, and a school renovation/expansion.

The Uptown Design Review Commission applies the Uptown Design Ordinance to proposed projects in Uptown Normal. Basically, it works to ensure that the central business district looks nice. Based on the list of reviews that this commission performed in 2008, it looks like signage and façades were the main concerns.

The Zoning Board of Appeals hears requests for zoning variances and amended special use permits. In 2008 this commission heard requests for yard setbacks, parking and turn-around “pads” in front yards, amended special use permits for several churches, and a request regarding a sign. A request for construction of a garage larger than the code maximum was denied.

Here’s hoping you have good luck with any request that you take to these groups!

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