Albertville hears of redevelopment interest at former Heidi’s site

BY AARON BROM

Sun Press Newspapers

Project would not include gas, liquor

The Albertville City Council heard of new interest in the former Heidi’s gas/convenience store located at Interstate 94 and County Rd. 37.

The council also approved an ordinance amending city code relating to garbage and refuse collectors, and adopted an ordinance amending the city code to permit off-sale intoxicating liquor and 3.2 malt liquor on Sundays.

HEIDI’S SITE

City planner Al Brixius updated the council regarding a realtor’s inquiry into the former Heidi’s site at 11850 62nd Avenue.

“(The realtor) indicated that due to Love’s Car Wash proposal in adjoining Otsego, there are no serious gas station/convenience store operators interested in this property,” Brixius said in his memo to the council.

He said the interested buyer is a car wash/cleaning company that would keep the current car wash and offer automobile detailing services.

The operation would include establishing an office on site and the storage of commercial vehicles.

“There was conversation that they would continue to offer off-sale liquor sales, however, this appears not to be a current consideration,” Brixius said. “The gas sales and convenience store would be discontinued, requiring the canopy, gas pumps, and gas tanks to be removed.”

He said the following uses would be allowed:

• Service business off-site is a permitted use. This use would include the off-site cleaning services and related offices.

• Minor auto repair. This definition would include auto detailing services. This use requires a conditional use permit. The applicant would need to modify the building to create service stalls. No outdoor detailing would be permitted.

• The existing car wash is an approved conditional use on the site.

• The cleaning businesses would require storage or company vehicles during off hours. Outdoor storage is allowed by conditional use permit. The outdoor storage area would need to be identified on the site and fenced and screened from the public street.

“The redevelopment of the site would involve demolition of the canopy, removal of the gas tanks and pumps, and reconstruction and striping of the parking lot,” Brixius concluded. “The building would need to be modified to create auto detailing service bays and a second tenant bay for the cleaning services. The modifications will require the building to meet current Building and Fire Code including a sprinkling system.”

No action was taken, as the item was for discussion purposes only at this time.

WASTE HAULERS

In other news, the council approved an ordinance amending city code relating to garbage and refuse collectors.

City Administrator Adam Nafstad noted that the city licenses and/or approves several different business activities such as massage therapy, liquor establishments, soliciting, gambling, and amusement devices. The city has also set a fee and required application materials for waste haulers, yet, there are no regulations in the city code regarding waste haulers as there is for other business activities.

Nafstad said the key issues include:

• The proposed ordinance set standards for collection activities, collection vehicles and containers, application and renewal process, and service complaints.

• The proposed ordinance also allows for suspension and/or revocation of a city license if a waste hauler does not comply with the standards.

• The city has not limited the number of licensed haulers. However, the city has required waste haulers to limit collection to Thursdays in order to limit days the collection vehicles are in residential neighborhoods. Commercial waste collection has not been limited to a single day.

• The proposed ordinance provides for proper waste hauling practices, proper waste disposal, accountability for the waste haulers and aims to align the city code with current licensing practices.

The new ordinance will require waste haulers to register with the city. “This creates accountability for the waste handling companies to ensure proper handling and disposal of trash,” Nafstad said.

The ordinance also requires waste haulers to obtain liability insurance, proposes a limit on hours of operation between 5 a.m. and 9 p.m., and requires a contact person that the city can directly communicate with.

“Staff feels a waste hauler ordinance is necessary to ensure proper waste hauling practices,” Nafstad said. “It’s an attempt to ensure quality waste handling services and proper disposal of waste collected.”

SUNDAY LIQUOR

In further news, the council adopted an ordinance amending the city code to permit off-sale intoxicating liquor and 3.2 malt liquor on Sundays.

In March 2017, the legislature approved and the Governor signed into law a change to the State Statutes to allow off-sale Sunday liquor sales from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. effective July 2, 2017. In order to match the State, the language in the Albertville city code must be amended.

Staff identified the following key issues:

• The city of Albertville licenses five off-sale establishments that would be eligible to sell off-sale on Sundays (Westside Liquor, Coborn’s Liquor, 152 Club, Geez, Neighbors).

• The city code currently prohibits the off-sale of liquor on Sundays.

• At the May 15, 2017 City Council meeting, the Council indicated their desire to match the State language.

• Recent court rulings provided that cities may be more restrictive on the hours of off-sale, but not more restrictive on days of off-sale (specifically cities cannot prohibit the off-sale of liquor on Sundays).

• Staff does not recommend a change in the fee amount for an off-sale liquor license.

• In order to allow establishments to comply with the July 2, 2017 effective date for Sunday off-sale, the local city code must be amended and the ordinance published prior to July 2, 2017.

In other action, the council:

Heard a legislative update from Rep. Eric Lucero

approved Sunday liquor sales from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. beginning July 2, 2017

approved County Road 19 and 57th Street NE signal and pedestrian improvements.

heard that Towne Lakes 6th Addition is scheduled for a public hearing on a PUD amendment and variance, and that Towne Lakes 7th Addition is expected to apply for a preliminary and final plat.

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Contact Aaron Brom at [email protected]