Council changes zoning for downtown properties
by Jennifer Cohron
May 15, 2014 | 1499 views | 0 0 comments | 27 27 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Cordova City Council approved zoning changes Tuesday night that expanded the downtown business district.

The former Piggly Wiggly site and several adjacent properties are among the parcels of land that are now zoned for commercial use. They were previously zoned for residential purposes.

The local post office and an abandoned grocery store next door were also moved from residential to business districts. A home on Massachusetts Avenue that was rezoned shortly after the April 2011 tornadoes in order to house a restaurant now reverts back to its original zoning and can be sold as a residence.

In a public hearing held prior to the council meeting, Mayor Drew Gilbert fielded several questions about the purpose of the rezoning.

“As we go to build back and attract developers, the bigger central business district you have, the more land you have to choose from when these developers come in. The central business district before was just the old Main Street,” Gilbert said.

Gilbert added that being part of the central business district also carries stricter building requirements.

“The central business district zoning ordinance is stronger than anywhere else in the city. It’s a lot higher standard as far as materials used, how they are put together and things like that,” Gilbert said.

Council members Ed Earp, Bobby Busby, Larry Sides and Warren Branch abstained from voting on the motion to approve the rezoning

In other action, the council:

• appointed Cynthia Rutledge to the Cordova Economic and Industrial Development Authority. Rutledge replaces Jerry Lewis, who recently resigned. His term expires in November. The CEIDA requested in a letter to the council that former Mayor Jack Scott replace Lewis. Gilbert’s recommendation was Rutledge, owner of local pizza parlor Mojos.

“I think she would be something new, something fresh for us. Having a face of our business community on that board is very important. I think she is well-spoken, intelligent and will represent the community well,” Gilbert said.

• awarded a contract for $3,447,352 to Clements Dean Building Company of Wilsonville for the City Hall/police station project.

• approved three petitions for annexation. The properties now included in the city limits includes an industrial site owned by the Cordova Water and Gas Board, a Texaco and a Dollar General. Annexation paperwork for several other properties that have been considered part of the city since 2002 will also be corrected.

• adopted a resoultion for Municipal Water Pollution Prevention which the council is required to pass each year.

• held a public hearing regarding a retail wine license for BP FoodMart. The establishment has already been approved for a license to sell beer. A vote on the matter will be taken at the May 27 meeting.