Norris Planning Minutes

June 2, 2014


Minutes of the Norris Planning Commission meeting, held in the Council Room of the Norris Community Building, 20 Chestnut Drive.


Members Present:  Chairman Spencer Boardman, Secretary Jeff Merritt, Members Chris Mitchell, Jack Black, Joy Wilson and Matt Zorvan

Public Present:  City Manager Tim Hester, City Planner Dan Hawk, Loretta Painter and Chris Cunningham

I.             Call to Order:  Chairman Boardman called the meeting to order at 5:00 pm.

II.            Hear the Public:  No member of the public spoke.

III.                Minutes May 5, 2014:  Mr. Black made motion to approve the minutes as written, Chairman Boardman seconded.  All voted unanimously to approve.

IV.          Old Business:

            1.  Review R-1 setback requirements

Mr. Hester explained that the R-1 district "Historic Residential area" or Old Norris has experienced a large number of variance request dealing with the side set back requirement, triggering this review.  Mr. Hawk commented that many of the lots in the "Historic Residential area of Old Norris" were created after the single family dwelling units were constructed in the 1930's and 40's, some have encroached into the side yard setback since the time parcel lines were established.  Mr. Hawk went onto say that as he sees it the Planning Commission can reduce the number of variance request by one of the following:

a.                Change Nothing.

b.                Create a new zoning district

c.                Amend the R-3 district

4.                Create a special exception

After a long discussion about the advantages and dis-advantages of each suggestion, Mr. Mitchell asked Mr. Hawk which option he thought would best serve the city.  Mr. Hawk suggested, by creating a new zoning district the number of side yard variance request should be reduced without changing the traditional R-1 standards.  Example:  might reduce the side yard setback from the current 15 feet to 7 or 8 feet with a minimum of 20 feet combined in the total.  Mr. Hawk also suggested that the City Police and Fire Departments be consulted as to their opinion, as it would pertain to safety before considering any changes, Mr. Hester agreed with Mr. Hawk's suggestion on both accounts. 

Chairman Boardman asked that Mr. Hawk draft options for The Planning Commission to review, including pros and cons of each option to be sent to each Commissioner before the July 7, meeting.  Mr. Hawk agreed.

2.            Final Draft of 2014-2024 Land Use & Transportation Plan

                Mr. Hawk reviewed with Commission the reason for a Land Use & Transportation Plan and why it is needed and required.  Mr. Hawk went thought a slide show surmising the document and suggested that after completion the Commission should periodically review the plan and suggest any changes to City Council.  Mr. Hawk warned that any changes after completion could be "cumbersome".  Chairman Boardman asked members to review the plan before the July 7th meeting and possibility vote to recommend for adoption by City Council.

3.                Adventure Tourism Presentation

                Postponed until the August 2014 meeting.

V.            New Business:

                1.                Training Review

            Chairman Boardman made comments on the May 19th Land Development training at the U.T. Arboretum in Oak Ridge, TN.  All were positive.

VI.                Adjourn

            Chairman Boardman asked for a motion to adjourn.  Mr. Zorvan made motion, Mr.Black seconded.  All voted unanimously to adjourn.

Minutes submitted by Jeff Merritt, Secretary