Commissioners hold off on rezoning along Ebert Rd.

The petition filed by Tyler and Todd Leinbach will go back to the planning board

Commissioners hold off on rezoning along Ebert Rd.
January 03
00:00 2019

The petition filed by Tyler and Todd Leinbach will go back to the planning board

After listening to several residents from the community speak out in opposition to a rezoning petition for a piece of land in the northwest portion of the county, the Board of Commissioners elected to hold off on a vote until a later date during their last meeting of the year.

The land in question is located on the southeast side of Ebert Road and North Evans Road. The rezoning petition submitted by Tyler and Todd Leinbach calls for the land to be changed from RS9 or residential to GB-L or storage services, retail. Instead of building a permanent structure for storage use, if rezoning is approved the Leinbachs plan to use mobile shipping containers.

Tyler Leinbach said the advantages of using the mobile shipping containers is that if Ebert Road is ever widened for any reason they can move the containers farther from the road. During the public hearing, Leinbach also addressed concerns from residents about the impact a storage facility will have on the area and possible light and noise pollution caused by the facility, along with other concerns.

“As Ebert Road continues to develop, we can be flexible and accommodate that,” he continued. “…There will be no run-off or environmental hazards because this is just simply storage. We’re not processing chemicals or inventory. There’s shipping containers and storage, simple as that.”

Leinbech said the lighting on the facility will be low hanging and have motion sensors. He said they also plan to create a natural buffer of trees to keep lighting from invading on others’ privacy. He also mentioned that the containers would not be stacked on top of each other, creating an “eye-sore” for neighbors.

“There will be no light or ongoing noise or even odor pollution. It’s not a hog farm, it’s not a car dealership and it’s not a rock concert,” he said.

When discussing the nature of the business, Leinbach said the 320-square foot shipping containers will be for commercial use only. He said they only plan to put 25-30 containers on the land. Because they are targeting businesses to use the storage units, Leinbach said there will be little impact on traffic in the area as well.

“…Because these are larger containers, we’re targeting businesses as our primary customers and businesses will not be in-and-out everyday as if somebody was moving homes and needed a temporary storage,” said Leinbach. “Storage is already a low foot traffic business, because ours are larger units targeting businesses, there’s even lower traffic.” 

Despite Leinbach’s talking points during the hearing, those in opposition of the rezoning raised questions about what would be stored in the containers, and the possibility that the business grows. Several residents also raised concerns on the impact the painted shipping units will have on the environment. Some residents near the land don’t have public water and must use well water.

“…You can start your business small but as things get better, of course, you’re going to find a way to add more to it. To me, it’s an eye-sore. I don’t like it and it’s hurting my environment because all my neighbors live on well water,” said Jorge Abrego during the public hearing.

“Anything that comes from that location-oil, gasoline, antibiotics-it could affect our water quality. My main concern here is quality of life and our resale value. Nobody wants to live around shipping containers and that’s going to hurt us a lot if we want to sell our property.”

Lee Heggy, who lives on Ferris Road, said when he listens to the size of the containers the Leinbachs intend to put on the property the first thing that comes to mind is eye-sore. He said when he bought the property it was rural and he wants it to stay that way. Heggy then asked the Leinbach’s if they would like to live next to a storage facility.

“…We bought to live there; we didn’t buy to live next to a business. There’s plenty of businesses on the other side of the road.” Heggy said.

According Chris Murphy, director of city/county planning, the rezoning request is not consistent with the low-density residential land use recommendations of the area plan. He noted that new commercial investments in the area are recommended for the West Clemmonsville Road/Ebert Road Activity Center and not in the middle of the residential area.

“We’re fearful that this would encourage other strip commercial rezoning along Ebert Road and this would be detrimental to the long-term transportation impact regarding access to the current and future schools further south along Ebert Road,” said Murphy.

When it came time to make a decision on the rezoning, Commissioner Gloria Whisenhunt made a motion to postpone a decision until further information is received regarding the matter. She also requested that the petition go back to planning and a site plan is created to address some of the problems raised by residents.

The motion was seconded by vice chairman Don Martin and unanimously approved by the board. It is unclear when the petition will be presented to the board again.

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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