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Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

Creation of business district OK'd

By Margie Wuebker
NEW BREMEN - New Bremen Planning Commission members Monday night approved the creation of a R-C Transitional District that would allow certain neighborhood businesses in residential areas along Washington Street (state Route 66).
The matter now heads to village council for final consideration. Village administrator Wayne York said the process will include a public hearing to give residents an opportunity to comment.
York and commission chairman Bill Wente stressed business-related requests would be handled on a case-by-case basis by the New Bremen Board of Zoning Appeals. Such things as building height, area and setbacks, parking and signage would be considered.
Permitted businesses would be retail and service-oriented operations including art or antique shops, business offices, specialty shops, medical and professional offices, bakery and food stores, delicatessens, bed and breakfasts, art or photography, specialty printing, real estate or insurance sales, music instruction limited to one student at a time, day care and nursery schools, handcrafts and clothing alterations and tailoring.
Additionally, the zoning board would consider requests from other retail businesses or personal service establishments that are of the same character and nature as those specifically allowed.
No automobile and truck repair or sales/services would be permitted. The proposed transitional district also specifies no equipment or process that creates noise, vibration, glare, fumes, odors or electrical interference would be allowable.
Restaurants had been included on the list of eligible businesses but were removed due to possible parking problems.
Zoning appeals board member Bryce Schmitmeyer said parking is likely to be the biggest issue for some requests.
A section of Washington Street, north of Plum Street to the downtown area, is already the site of some business establishments. The proposal would widen the transitional district from the corporation line near Amsterdam Road northward to the village's wastewater treatment plant site.
"Basically, it would include all properties with a Washington Street address," council member Craig Hoffman said.
Mayor Jeff Pape proposed the creation of the transitional district several years ago. The topic surfaced again in recent months.
York believes the creation of the new district would help prospective business owners find a place to set up shop.
"There are very few existing commercial buildings available on the open market," he said.
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