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  • By Lisa Brody

Commissioners give planning board action list

Birmingham city commissioners unanimously approved the planning board's 2018-2019 action list, which lists the top priorities the commission wants them to address, at their meeting on Monday, April 9.

Birmingham Planning Director Jana Ecker said the action list, which prioritizes new bistro parameters as the primary issue, includes renovation of commercial spaces; a long term study of retail; commercial projections onto public property and architectural allowances; shared parking; the definition of church and religious institutions; amending the cost of parking space for payment-in-lieu to allow for additional building height in the city's Triangle District; principal versus flexible uses in each district; potential residential zoning changes; green urbanism; additional items to be considered during the master plan process; the review process for public projects; window tinting; transitional zoning; short term study of retail; economic development license boundary review; and Rail District boundary review.

“It's almost exactly what it was and in the same order as last year, with some checked off, along with some added from the city manager,” Ecker said. She said the planning board added to the list a review of public projects.

To questions from commissioners, some of whom wanted to switch the priority of a few items, Ecker said new bistro parameters was almost completed, so it should stay at number one, and that it would come before them in a month or so. She said renovations of existing commercial buildings was almost done, as well.

To a question from commissioner Rackeline Hoff, Ecker said that shared parking would not be applicable to the downtown area and would not help alleviate the parking problem “because it's not in the areas of the city where there are parking shortages.”

“This document helps guide the master plan process study and come to conclusions so we get what we need,” commissioner Mark Nickita said.

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