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Issue #32 Charter Amendment

The City is proposing a Charter Amendment in which a majority affirmative vote is necessary for passage.  The ballot language is as follows: “Shall Section 9.7 Mandatory Referral of Rezoning to Electors of Article IX Zoning and Building Ordinances and Board of Appeals of the Charter of the City of North Ridgeville be repealed?”
There are several reasons the City is asking that this be removed from the Charter.  Currently this section states that an application to rezone property to multi-family, defined as anything more than a duplex, must be approved by Planning Commission followed by City Council. If approved by City Council, it then has to be placed on the ballot and approved by a majority vote by the City and in the ward in which the property is located.
The first sentence states “No parcel or parcels of land shall be rezoned for multiple family dwellings until the total of multiple family dwelling units equal fifteen percent (15%) of all the dwelling units in the Municipality on land presently zoned for such use.”  There is a lack of clarity that this sentence presents. To arrive at this number is nearly impossible to calculate. R-2 Multiple Residence District allows a density of 4.2 families per acre or for two-family or multifamily dwellings, eight families per acre. R-3 Multiple Family Residence District allows a density of eight dwelling units per acre, and R-4 Multiple Family Residence District allows a density of 32 dwelling units per acre. One can easily see that to calculate that elusive 15% number would be difficult.
Also, this section combined with Ordinance 5174-2014 prohibits residential dwellings as a permitted or conditional use in business districts.  Because of this the City cannot consider any “mixed-use” development. Developers have considered the property on Lear Nagle Road, referred to as the Staubach property, and others for mixed-use similar to Crocker Park in Westlake or One Lakewood Place. Developments such as these which combine retail with residential and/or open space are currently not allowed in North Ridgeville.  This type of development could be considered as a good use for the Staubach property, the former middle school location on Center Ridge Road and others. The new owner of the Field Sweet School on Root Road would like to convert that building into condominiums but the property would have to be rezoned to multifamily requiring a ballot issue.  Because of these requirements, there have been developers that have chosen other communities with less stringent prerequisites.   
If you would like to read the City Charter in its entirety, please click the link below.  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Mayor's Office at (440) 353-0811.

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