People opening businesses in Red Bank have less stringent design regulations to follow now that the city has repealed and replaced the design review ordinance city commissioners passed in 2017.
Commissioners voted 4-0 on Tuesday to pass an ordinance establishing new design standards. Commissioner Carol Rose was absent.
The city's planning commission reviewed and recommended approval of the new standards, Mayor Eddie Pierce said at the commission's Jan. 21 meeting, when commissioners again voted to table an ordinance that would have suspended enforcement of the previous design review ordinance for a period of up to one year.
The enforcement moratorium ordinance passed unanimously on first reading Dec. 3, but the second vote was postponed until Feb. 4 since decisions about the revisions were made more quickly than initially expected, said Pierce.
At the Dec. 3 meeting, Pierce said inconveniences and hardships current and potential property owners face in complying with the design review standards may have resulted in businesses choosing not to expand or open in Red Bank.
City Manager Tim Thornbury said the city had businesses express interest in coming into Red Bank that never followed up after seeing the city's design review standards.
Updated standards include landscaping requirements, such as the number of trees required to be planted in parking lots; and a reduction in the required sidewalk width. The new ordinance also allows the city to make exceptions to the standards on a case-by-case basis, said Thornbury.