4/5 council vote required for rezoning
A developer wants to rezone residential land in southeast Corcoran to industrial for a proposed mini storage facility.
The city council considered a sketch plan for the site but reached no consensus whether it would support the development, which would require a 4/5 council vote to rezone the property.
The council also discussed the Metropolitan Council’s proposal to extend sewer services to County Rd. 19 and Hwy. 55 near the city of Loretto and Corcoran’s extreme southwest corner.
RossLyn Holdings submitted a sketch plan to consider a mini-storage facility and office condos on a 40-acre site at 19219 and 19235 County Rd. 10 near the Corcoran Lions Park. The plan includes two parcels with mini storage on the eastern parcel and a possible office development on the western parcel.
Planner Kendra Lindahl said the planning commission reviewed the item last month. “The planning commission had much discussion about whether or not this was an appropriate use in this location,” she said in her report.
For example, she noted that commissioner Daryl Krueger believed this property to be a primary gateway into the city. “He indicated that he felt this type of use change does not benefit the city of Corcoran, just the landowner and developer.”
Lindahl said the commission generally supported the idea of the developer proceeding to the next step, but that it “still had concerns about the proposal and were not committing to any future approvals.”
She said the city should consider the following issues when reviewing a comprehensive plan amendment request:
• The extent to which the location criteria of applicable existing or proposed land use plan classifications are satisfied.
• Evidence submitted by the applicant demonstrating the reason(s) that the plan should be changed, including, but not limited to, whether new information has become available since the Comprehensive Plan was adopted that supports re-examination of the plan, or that existing or proposed development offers new opportunities or constraints that were not previously considered by the plan.
• Whether or not the change is needed to allow reasonable development of the site.
• The relationship of the proposed amendment to the supply and demand for particular land uses within the city and the immediate vicinity of the site.
• A demonstration by the applicant that the proposed amendment has merit beyond the interests of the proponent.
• The possible impacts of the amendment on all specific elements of the Comprehensive Plan as may be applicable, including, but not limited to: transportation; sanitary sewer, including existing and proposed sanitary sewer flows as compared to the adopted plan; housing, including the extent to which the proposal contributes to the city’s adopted housing goals; surface water, including compliance with the city’s goals for water quality as well as water quantity management; water supply; parks and open space.
• Consideration of the impact of the proposed amendment upon current and future special assessments and utility area charges, impacts upon the City.
“The city has a relatively high level of discretion in approving or denying a rezoning application,” Lindahl said. “The proposed zoning must be consistent with the comprehensive plan.”
In discussing the sketch plan, Mayor Ken Guenthner and councilors Ron Thomas, Tom Cossette, Diane Lynch and Rich Asleson didn’t give a thumbs up or thumbs down to the concept.
City administrator Brad Martens said after the meeting, “I don’t think there was any real consensus from the council. The planning commission was mixed as well. If the developer comes back with an application, that will be a significant discussion at the planning commission and city council.”
If the applicant proceeds, they would need to submit applications for a comprehensive plan amendment, zoning map amendment, preliminary plat, site plan, conditional use permit for mini-storage and final plat.
COUNTY RD. 19 SEWER
In other matters, the council considered a proposal from the Metropolitan Council to extend sanitary sewer near County Rd. 19 and Hwy. 55 in Loretto and extreme southwest Corcoran. The Met Council oversees municipal sewer in the seven-county metro area.
The proposal requires 1,000 developable acres of which more than 400 would need to be in the city of Corcoran.
City administrator Martens said in his report, “Staff has met with the cities of Medina and Loretto to talk about the proposal and the group has come to a consensus that the proposal would be a benefit to the three communities and should support the project moving forward. Specifically to Corcoran this project could expedite sanitary sewer services to the southwest portion of the community and reduce costs by shortening the distance that pipe would be extended.”
Martens said the future project would require infrastructure investments including pipe work, a new lift station, and water resources such as a water tower.
The council unanimously directed staff to send a letter of support to the Met Council in favor of the proposed sanitary sewer project along County Rd. 19.
The letter was written by Mayor Guenthner and cites additional regional benefits the sewer would provide, such as environmental benefit for Lake Independence and Lake Spurzem through the removal of the Loretto wastewater pond system and “reduces costs in local cities construction of services to the proposed service area which includes Corcoran.”
In other action, the council:
SET a preliminary 2014 levy of $3,106,700, a 5.9 percent increase from 2013. Final levy approval is certified in December. Cities can lower the preliminary levy before that time but may not increase it.
APPOINTED Mayor Guenthner and councilor Thomas to negotiate with Lennar Development what the development agreement should be between Lennar and the city for Lennar’s proposed residential development in southeast Corcoran. This includes payment for infrastructure, transit improvement on Hackamore Road and entrances, and what the developer will pay for costs incurred. Staff anticipates the developer to submit a preliminary plat before the end of the year.