City planning staff to present zoning changes
By Meg Olson
repeated delays Blaine planning staff are ready to roll
out the first proposed changes to the city’s
comprehensive plan and zoning map.
The first set of changes, to be presented at a public meeting March 9 at city hall, include changes that would make a ban on multi-family housing in most of central Blaine permanent.
For the lettered streets area north of Interstate 5 that has been subject to a moratorium on multi-family housing since August 2004, “I’m proposing a new designation that would promote single family character housing,” Blaine community development director Terry Galvin told city council at their February 27 meeting. The area is currently zoned residential medium density, which allows duplexes and four-plexes in addition to single family homes. Under the new SF-2 zoning duplexes would be allowed but only if they showed “single-family character,” Galvin said, such as two buildings on one lot with zero lot lines and green space in between. “It opens affordable housing with single-family character,” Galvin said.
South of the freeway the Salishan and Brickyard neighborhoods, now zoned for single family homes and duplexes, would change to single-family homes only. “They have been very strong in that they want to stay a single-family neighborhood,” Galvin said.
handful of other small zoning changes are proposed to
increase consistency among neighboring zones and make
certain parcels more useable. For example, Galvin said
an area between the freeway and Peace Portal Drive at
the south end of the city would be changed from planned
commercial to highway commercial. “As planned commercial
it doesn’t allow anything to occur under five acres,” he
said. “If we’re going to grow we’ll
grow incrementally with incubator businesses.”
Following the March 9 public meeting planning commission will begin their review of the proposed changes at a March 16 work session.