The Lake Havasu City Council will consider reducing the types of areas storage units will be allowed in town during its meeting on Tuesday.
The City Council will hold a public hearing to discuss the proposed ordinance, which would remove future storage unit developments as an acceptable land use in General Commercial Districts and in Commercial-Southgate Districts. The Planning and Zoning Commission held a public hearing on the proposal in October and voted 6-1 to recommend its approval, but commissioners were unanimous that storage units should be barred in both of those districts. Commissioner Don Bergen cast the dissenting vote after saying that he preferred the original proposal from city staff that would have also removed storage in mixed use general districts.
Currently, storage units are allowed in General Commercial, Commercial-Southgate, Mixed Use General, Industrial, and Light Industrial districts. There has been no discussion about eliminating storage developments in industrial areas of town.
Planning Division Manager Luke Morris told the commission in October that the city has been processing a lot of applications for storage unit developments in recent years, and decided to bring forward a proposal based on concerns expressed by both the City Council and by Planning and Zoning about such development. Specifically, councilmembers and commissioners have been concerned about storage along State Route 95 at the northern and southern city limits because that is the first thing that people will see when visiting Lake Havasu City, or returning home.
General Commercial and Commercial Southgate Districts were identified because those districts are plentiful at the north and/or southern entrances along the highway. Mixed use general districts were also included in the original proposal by city staff, but the commission ultimately elected to remove those districts from its recommendation to approve.
Desert Land Group’s Chief Financial Officer Luke Still spoke during the commission meeting in late-October saying that he broadly supports the text amendment and its intentions to protect the north and south gates, but requested that storage units continue to be allowed in mixed use general districts.
Still noted that mixed use general districts are not commonly found within Lake Havasu City, and none of them are located near, or visible from State Route 95. Still said Desert Land Group happens to be involved with all three properties in town currently zoned as mixed-use general, which are located in Havasu Foothills, Havasu Riviera, and at the corner of London Bridge Road and Industrial. Additionally, all three of those lots were rezoned as mixed use general within the last three years with the stated intention of allowing storage on those properties.
Commissioners largely agreed that the goals of this ordinance could be accomplished without eliminating storage from mixed use general districts.
Morris told the commission in October that, if approved, there would be no change for existing storage facilities, which would be “grandfathered in.” Additionally, Morris said projects in the works that already have certain approvals from the city, such as a building permit for a storage facility, would be allowed to continue with their development plans.
City Attorney Kelly Garry told commissioners in October that if the City Council approves a text amendment, the changes would officially go into effect 30 days later on Dec. 23, in accordance with state statute, unless the council decides to delay its implementation longer.
Tuesday’s council meeting is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m., inside the council chambers located at the police facility at 2360 N. McCulloch Blvd.