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FMPC OKs liquor zoning change

Farragut Municipal Planning Commission members cleared the path for a new liquor store ordinance during their regular meeting March 15.

Community Development Director Ruth Hawk explained to commissioners the Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen has been working on the wording of a new liquor store ordinance for several months.

The target date for the second reading of the liquor store ordinance is May, and Hawk said in order to reach that goal some changes had to be made in the Farragut Zoning Ordinance to coincide with the liquor store ordinance.

One of those changes concerned rezoning of property.

Under current ordinance, liquor stores are relegated to property zoned C-1-M and businesses with outside bars, such as the Wild Wing Café, are confined to areas zoned C-2-M. The ordinance change, which commissioners approved, zoned such entities, changed their zoning classifications for stores and outdoor bars to C-1 and C-2 respectively.

“What I perceived is that the residents wanted liquor stores in limited areas,” Commission Chairman Robert “Bob” Hill said. “Now they’ll be put everywhere.”

Mayor W. Edward “Eddy” Ford III advised Hill, saying stores would still be limited to C-1 districts and restricted to meeting certain criteria in terms of distance from schools, churches, mortuaries and subdivisions.

Farragut officials postponed any action on making an amendment to the town’s liquor ordinance after lengthy conversation during the Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen meeting March 8.

In other business, commissioners suggested staff deal with an issue concerning an elderly housing project to be created near the intersection of Thornton Drive and Kingston Pike.

“We brought this matter to you in case it progresses so that you would understand what was happening,” Hawk said.

In December, commissioners approved the resubdivision of parcels on 7.25 acres at the southwest corner of Kingston Pike and Thornton Drive at the request of TJ Development and Management. The property is directly across for Stonecrest Shopping Center.

In a workshop session, Don Brewer of the firm of Brewer, Ingram, Fuller, Architects Inc., told commissioners developers plan on putting 84 elderly housing units on the property. A “pipestem,” Brewer said, would connect the property to Kingston Pike.

That pipestem was at the heart of the issue. Hawk said the driveway, which connected to Kingston Pike, turned out to not be the right place to allow optimal sight distance for drivers turning out on to Kingston Pike.

A possible solution might be to move the driveway east, but Jay McBride of TJ Development said the grade of the land wouldn’t handle a driveway. He instead suggested the possibility of raising the grade of the original proposed drive to create a better sight range.

Town engineer Darryl Smith said that could be one option to resolving the issue and plans to look at that possibility.


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