Medina changes zoning to expand business district to West Avenue

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 27 September 2017 at 7:28 am

‘We are rapidly getting to the point where there is no space left.’ – Marty Busch, Medina code enforcement officer

MEDINA – The downtown business district on Main and Center streets has enjoyed a renaissance the past decade, with many new businesses opening in the village’s historic commercial buildings.

“We are rapidly getting to the point where there is no space left,” Marty Busch, the Medina code enforcement officer, told the Village Board on Monday.

Medina held a public hearing on creating a Business Overlay District. The board followed the Planning Board’s recommendation to put the overlay on West Avenue, from the Walsh Hotel near the railroad tracks to Lee Place, an alley next to St. Mary’s Catholic Church.

This new option will allow businesses to set up on West Avenue without spot zoning. Busch said the overlay district would allow offices, frame shops, physician and dentist offices, and other businesses that are not considered high impact in a residential area.

The businesses would be required to have some screening by neighboring residential properties. The businesses also will have to go before the Planning Board for certificates of appropriateness for any signs and exterior building alterations.

Village officials favored West Avenue over other spots for the overlay district because it’s so close to the downtown district. That makes it contiguous and easily walkable, Busch said.

The overlay district gives businesses a new option right by the central business district. Without the overlay district, village officials were concerned some new businesses might start popping up all over the village, making the businesses appear to be haphazardly located.

“This helps to focus the central business district,” Busch said.

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