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PRAIRIE GROVE -- Prairie Grove City Council amended the city's zoning ordinance last week to increase the minimum lot size for property in R-1.75 zones.

Lot sizes for this zone for single-family homes must now have at least 6,500 square feet with a minimum frontage width of 65 feet. Previously, the minimum lot size was 5,000 square feet with a minimum frontage width of 50 feet.

Larry Oelrich, director of administrative services and public works, told council members the Planning Commission has voiced concerns with the smaller lot sizes.

In many cases, Oelrich said, developers are coming in with plans for lot sizes that are 70 feet in width but they are having to request an R-1.75 zone, instead of a R-1.5 zone, which has a minimum lot area of 8,000 square feet and a minimum lot width of 80 feet.

Oelrich recommended increasing the minimum sizes to address commissioners' concerns and to reflect the plans that are being submitted to the city.

The council approved an emergency clause so the changes would take effect immediately.

The Council on May 26 approved two requests to rezone land from A-1, agricultural, to R-1.75. One request was already on first reading so the changes approved in lot sizes will not apply to this rezoning request for about 29 acres off U.S. Highway 62 and going back toward Richardson Road. This request was made by Linda Dizney Revocable Trust.

The council approved a second request from Daugherty-Stearman Co. LLC to rezone 54 acres from A-1 to R-1.75 for land on the west side of Heritage Parkway going from Park Street to Butler Road. Oelrich said the concept plan for this development is 178 lots that would have frontage widths of 70 feet.

In other action, the council waived competitive bidding for the purchase of a used Bobcat mini-excavator for $26,000 from Williams Tractor of Fayetteville and a sewer flushing machine for $99,500 from Henard Utility Products of Searcy.

Oelrich said the purchase of a mini-excavator is in the 2020 budget.

The city had planned to purchase a sewer flushing machine in 2021, but Oelrich said the current one has required lots of repairs and has to be hauled out of town for those repairs. He thanked the city of Lincoln for helping out when Prairie Grove's machine has been out of commission.

The city will purchase a demo unit with money from the sewer rehab reserve account.

The council also approved the purchase of two Dodge Durango police vehicles for $27,987 each.

It placed the preliminary plat for Wagnon Springs subdivision on Mock Street on second reading. The subdivision's detention pond is located under a large electrical transmission line and the city is waiting to receive information on whether SWEPCO would allow the basin to be in its easement.

Oelrich received the go-ahead from the council to research a sewer/water capacity fee for developments. He explained that subdivisions and large-scale projects impact pump stations which affects the capacity of those stations. Future maintenance of these systems is expensive for the city, Oelrich said.

He recommends the city consider capacity depletion fees and possibly pump station maintenance fees for developments that impact this infrastructure.

General News on 06/03/2020

Print Headline: Council Increases Lot Sizes For Higher Density Zone

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