Superior’s Plan Commission is taking another look at the city’s zoning code to accommodate a business that wants to have its zoning code match the type of service the business provides.
Property owner Steve Vujcevic sought to rezone the property at 701 Catlin Ave. from M1 light manufacturing to M2 heavy manufacturing, or anything that allows an impound lot. The change would accommodate his tenant’s plans for the towing service it operates.
Prior to the Commission meeting Wednesday, Jan 15, Vujcevic installed a screened fence, guardrail and razor wire around the area that would be used as an impound lot.
“I have a different solution that I would like to present to you rather than an M2 designation for a small parcel of property, which I don’t care for because it turns into a kind of spot zoning situation,” said Jason Serck, Superior’s economic development, port and planning director.
Currently, the city doesn’t have a good designation for impound lots, and many of the impound lots that exist in the city are in M1 districts. He said changing the zoning to M2 could open the property to some undesirable uses in the future.
Property on the north side of Winter Street is zoned M1 across the street from an R3 apartment residential zone.
Serck proposed making impound lots an allowable use in an M1 zone. He said impound lots are already subject to permitting that goes through the city clerk and building inspections offices.
“It was an impound lot previously, and these folks have cleaned it up,” Serck said.
“He’s not going to be selling any cars on that property,” said Attorney David Kropid, who represents Vucjevic and his tenant. He said vehicles would be held there for up to 45 days, and if they are not claimed by their owners, they would be sold at auction.
“My clients want to do it the right way,” Kropid said.
“I went down and looked at it … it’s really an improvement,” Commission member Dennis Dalbec said.
Currently, the city lumps impound lots in with salvage yards, which are allowed in an M2 district, Serck said. By changing the zoning code, the lots that already exist in an M1 district would conform to the city’s code. Some salvage yards have existed in M1 zones because they were there before the city's zoning codes existed, he said.
The Plan Commission tabled the request for a zoning change until its members have a chance to review a change that would allow impound lots in M1 districts.
The change is expected to be presented when the Commission meets again Wednesday, Feb. 19.