Throughout the project, we’ll post questions and comments that have been submitted on comment cards collected at community meetings, sent via email or submitted via the website.

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Mla??!

I saw this acronym in the latest revision and wondered what it stood for (if not mother-in-law apartment...???)?

Staff Reply:

MLA stands for Minimum Lot Area

Lot Size Requirement?

Hello! Under Recode, what will be the minimum lot size requirement for a  duplex home in the most common residential neighborhoods?

Staff Reply:

Here are the minimum lot sizes for duplexes in several of the proposed residential districts:

    RN-1:  15,000 SF

    RN-2:  10,000 SF

    RN-3:   7,500 SF

    RN-4:   7,000 SF

    RN-5:   5,000 SF

    RN-6:   5,000 SF

Duplexes are special uses in the proposed RN-1 and RN-2 districts, meaning they would require Planning Commission approval. They are permitted uses in the other proposed residential districts. Please let me know if you have further questions.

Please Support Recode!

Hello All,

I am writing to express my support of the Recode Knoxville process and to urge you to adopt the recommendations. 

This has been a fully transparent and public process. Citizens have been given multiple opportunities to participate. I believe leadership on the process has operated in good faith and with transparency, reaching out to the public and gaining as much public input as is possible over almost three years. I have attended several of the meetings myself. 

I support the increased allowance of ADUs. I support the application of the Hillside and Ridgetop Protection Plan being widely applied across zones, and not only applying to residential zones. This is necessary to help control the effects of severe weather events. I support the greater diversity of development this zoning update would allow and encourage, particularly relating to transportation corridors where greater density and mixed-use structures are desirable.

Staff Reply:

Recode Vote

I urge you to move forward with the Recode process on Monday. I am so sick of the fear mongering from those who claim to have had no public process for this vote. It feels like a coordinated campaign, most likely funded by those who have the most to lose from the new code, namely developers. Don’t let those who fear change deter you. 

Staff Reply:

Community Forum Response To Recode Draft 5--after May 14 And May 30 Special Called City Council Meetings -- July 11, 2019

To: Members of Knoxville City Council, Recode Knoxville, Gerald Green

From: Community Forum, Larry Silverstein, Chairperson

Subject: Community Forum Response to Recode Draft 5, as amended through the May 30, 2019, Special Meeting of Council

Date: July 11, 2019

Community Forum submits the attached comprehensive Response to Recode Draft 5 (cover letter and full response) (cover letter and full response), as amended during the May 14 and May 30, Special-Called Council Meetings, and as recommended by the Knoxville-Knox County Planning Commission at the June 13, 2019, meeting.

Community Forum previously submitted its original Response to Draft 5 on May 27, 2019.

We urge City Council to postpone first reading approval of Recode on July 16, 2019. Progress has been made in addressing many important provisions in Recode since Draft 5 came out on May 1, 2019. However, the length of the Special-Called Council Meetings, coupled with the very late hour, resulted in some issues not being adequately addressed, and they require further consideration. Additionally, Council directed Planning staff to propose language to address other specific issues.

To date, we have not seen proposed language for several important issues, including the Hillside Protection Overlay.  We do not know whether or not we, or Council members will see updates before the July 16, 2019, City Council meeting.

It can be presumed from just the material contained in this Community Forum Response, that there likely will be many proposed amendments to be considered and voted upon on July 16, 2019. No doubt other amendments will be proposed that neither Council members nor the public are familiar with. It is likely at the meeting that there will be discussion about the latest maps which could lead to further changes that will need to be considered.

From past experience at the two Special Meetings in May, everybody realizes the difficulty of drafting important and substantive amendments on the fly and understanding the meaning and impact of the exact language of the amendment. This leads to confusion as to what is being voted on when there is not adequate time to fully understand the amendment or contemplate its impact. It is also extremely difficult for the public to offer input if it does not understand the amendment that is being considered.

Therefore, given that there have already been many substantial amendments made to the proposed Ordinance since May 1, 2019, members of City Council and the public deserve a reasonable amount of time to review Recode in its entirety, after it is further amended on July 16, 2019, and before it is considered on First Reading.

Throughout this lengthy Recode process, Community Forum and its individual members have repeatedly asserted both in writing and orally, that City Council must understand the rationale for any significant changes to the existing Zoning Ordinance. Further, City Council must fully understand the impact such changes would have on properties and neighborhoods. It is crucial that this analysis continues up until votes are taken to adopt this proposed Ordinance. City Council must conclude that all questions have been answered to their complete satisfaction, and they have received all the information necessary to make informed decisions.

City Council must understand that approving the proposed Ordinance is not just changing the law, but in many instances is significantly changing the entire zoning approval process from application, to exhaustion of appeals, and to final implementation of what has been approved.

The zoning Ordinance is law, and every word is important to the entire zoning process. The Ordinance language must be clear in order:

(A) for the city to be able to enforce the Ordinance;

(B)for the public to be able to comply with the Ordinance when making applications;

(C)for the public, particularly adjacent property owners and neighborhoods, to be able to understand the process for responding to applications;

(D)for the Planning Commission staff to be able to apply the Ordinance to the applications it receives and make its recommendations to the Planning Commission;

(E)for the Planning Commission to be able to consider the application, consider the staff recommendation, apply the Ordinance to the application, and vote on what comes before it; and

(F)for the City Zoning Administrator, City Council, BZA, and the courts to be able to handle requests for modifications and appeals provided for in the Ordinance.

Due to grandfathering, our city will have to live with any negative effects. For these reasons, every effort must be made to avoid oversights and unintended consequences. Providing reasonable time to reflect on the amended ordinance before voting on first reading, is important if errors are to be avoided.

Community Forum has worked extremely hard since Draft 1 went public on March 21, 2018, to carefully review the proposed Ordinance, to compare it to the existing Ordinance, to ask pertinent questions, and to make specific recommendations to improve the proposed Ordinance. We intend to continue this course for as long as it takes to get it right before it gets adopted. As our attached Response indicates in great detail, there is still work to be done. City Council must set the appropriate timetable.

We look forward to continuing the discussion on July 16, 2019, or at any time before the meeting at your convenience.

Sincerely,

Larry Silverstein, Chairperson, Community Forum

7808 Sheffield Dr.

Knoxville, TN, 37909

693-1256

Larrys55@aol.com

Staff Reply:

Support For Wrapping Up Recode

Hello All,

I want to express thanks to the City of Knoxville and Knoxville-Knox County Planning, as well as Camiros and the Stakeholder Advisory Committee, for undertaking the long and complicated process of updating our zoning code. I believe leadership on the process has operated in good faith and with transparency, reaching out to the public and gaining as much public input as is possible over the past 27 (?) months. I have attended several of the meetings. I have witnessed the City Council, City staff, and Planning staff take and respond to many citizen questions and concerns. That we have just completed reviewing the 5th ordinance draft and are currently reviewing the 4th map draft is a testament to the process and the effort that leaders are making to get this right, while at the same time acknowledging that it will be a living document. The revisions to drafts and maps result from community feedback and many people have engaged in the process. While it must be true that not every parcel owner in the City is aware of the Recode process, it is also likely true that many of the parcel owners have never paid attention to their zoning at all and will continue not to. That doesn't mean the process has been any less valuable and effective.

I hope that the ordinance will be approved before our City elections are held. I support the increased allowance of ADUs and appreciate that, in general, different neighborhoods have not been provided differing rights or privileges. I support the application of the Hillside and Ridgetop Protection Plan being widely applied across zones, and not only applying to residential zones. This is necessary to help control the effects of severe weather events. I support the greater diversity of development this zoning update would allow and encourage, particularly relating to transportation corridors where greater density and mixed-use structures are desirable.

Thank you for your efforts and for listening to our comments.

Staff Reply:

Next Steps - Recode Knoxville Zoning Ordinance Update

Hello: I represent the Brick Industry Association, and just wanted to inquire what next steps are for the zoning ordinance update, and when it would go before the City Council for vote.

Staff Reply:

City Council members are reviewing the draft updated zoning map and will discuss the map at an upcoming workshop. Adoption of the draft ordinance and zoning map will be the next step, which may occur in August.

Zoning

I would like to suggest making the entire street from 804-840 N 4th Ave, Knoxville, TN 37917 to have C-N zoning, considering this seems the designation most of the street is being recoded to. With the current mixed zoning of industrial, commercial, and office all on the same street from the highway being put in beside the street, several buildings that are being recoded as residential are currently used commercially. For example, 820 N 4th has for some time been a bar/club/restaurant with a parking lot next door. Also, 817 N 4th is a parts business, whose building would be very difficult to use residentially. In fact, there are actually only two houses on the street that are being used purely as a residential home. Switching some of the street to residential will benefit far fewer houses considering the past allowable uses of the street. By making all C-N, it allows the mixed commercial use that has been established and would greatly help continue the improvements the street has been under in recent months. Thanks

Staff Reply:

Recode And Hillside Protection

Protect Hillside and Ridgetop protection in ALL zones. Don't let developers run roughshod over this,  where they will clear and grade property that will impose risks of flooding, eroding, and the destruction of our topography. The Planning Commission got this one wrong, caving to developers instead of protecting the environment. Please reject the Planning Commission's recommendation on Hillside Protection in Recode.

Staff Reply:

Hillside And Ridgetop Protection

I am writing in regards to the recent motion by the planning commission to remove the Hillside and Ridgetop protection ordinance from office and commercial zoned property. ALL property no matter the zoning should remain protected. There is absolutely no reason that only residential should be subjected to this ordinance, while developers flatten ridges and scar our hills. We must protect our areas natural features. Knox County does not need to follow in the footsteps of Sevier County and absolutely destroy the natural beauty that we are so fortunate to have. Mudslides, rockslides and flooding continue to get worse with these poor decisions made for greed. There are miles and miles of property already within zoning that can be used for more 1/2 empty commercial and office space if you need to build so badly. 

Staff Reply:

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