Reynoldsburg considers changes to site plan process


By Christine Bryant
Staff Writer

The new year kicked off with Reynoldsburg City Council members considering changes to the city’s Code of Ordinances, including one that would allow the Planning Commission to review and approve major site plans instead of the Board of Zoning and Building Appeals.

Most of the proposed changes that were presented during the Service Committee meeting Jan. 4 involved smoothing and organizing text in the current code, but Eric Snowden, the city’s planning administrator, proposed one significant change.

Currently, a chapter of the Zoning Code calls for major site plans to be reviewed and approved by the Board of Zoning and Building Appeals (BZBA). These site plans are typically large commercial projects, such as The Shoppes at East Broad that currently are under construction.

However, one of the code revisions Snowden proposed to the Service Committee would amend this chapter and require the Planning Commission to review and approve instead of the BZBA.
There are several advantages to the change, Snowden says.

“Major site plans are new development or projects, not an appeal, so this will make more sense given the other reviews conducted by BZBA,” he said.

Nearly every other peer community conducts reviews in a similar manner, he said, so applicants and developers will have an easier time understanding the process.

“Since our Design Review Board meets on the same night, projects could be reviewed in a more efficient manner provided there are no other unique circumstances,” Snowden said. “The DRB reviews building architecture, either new buildings or changes to existing buildings.”

This proposed code revision will not change any of the requirements for new developments, and will only change the board or commission conducting the review, he said.

All of the proposed code changes will now go to City Council for further review and approval.

Organizational moves

Also on Jan. 4, a new council took the helm, as organizational structure and appointments for committees were confirmed for 2016:

•Council appointed April Beggerow to serve as Clerk of Council.

•Councilman Chris Long will serve as President Pro Tempore of Council – a position that allows him to assume president duties should current president Doug Joseph be unable to fulfill.

•Councilman Dan Skinner was re-appointed as the city of Reynoldsburg’s representative to the West Licking Joint Fire District Board for 2016.

•Community Development Committee: Skinner will serve as chairman, with Marshall Spalding as vice chairman. Stephen Cicak and Brett Luzader also will serve on the committee.

•Safety Development Committee: Long will serve as chairman, with Cicak as vice chairman. Luzader and Spalding also will serve on the committee.

•Service Committee: Council elected Mel Clemens to serve as chairman, with Luzader as vice chairman. Spalding and Cicak also will serve on the committee.

•Finance Committee: Barth Cotner will serve as chairman, with Long as vice chairman. Clemens and Skinner also will serve on the committee.

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