Campus zone expansion fails to pass
The Sayre borough council Wednesday voted to amend and re-advertise a proposed amendment that would bring sweeping changes to the borough's zoning ordinance.
Among the changes, a controversial proposal to rezone properties on Hayden and Chemung streets between South Wilbur Avenue and the St. John's Lutheran Church property will not be included in the revised amendment due to lack of a motion at Wednesday's special meeting. The properties had been proposed to be rezoned from multi-family residential to medical campus.
The council also voted to leave parcels on Hospital Place in a single/double-family residential zone instead of changing them to a medical campus designation. Council president Henry Farley abstained from voting on all of the proposed changes Wednesday.
The council also voted to keep North Lehigh Avenue south of Mohawk Street as light commercial. The section had been proposed to change to multi-family residential, a designation many argued the small lot sizes on the street could not support.
In addition, the council voted to keep the Joe Hunt and Associates engineering office and Harry's Automotive properties, both at the intersection of North Lehigh and Mohawk streets, as light commercial instead of changing them to light commercial. Under the new proposal, the west side of North Lehigh Avenue between Mohawk and Bradford streets will also remain light commercial.
A proposal to rezone the south side of West Lockhart Street, between Elmer and Wilbur avenues, and South Wilbur Avenue, from Lockhart Street to the Guthrie parking lot, from single/double family residential to downtown commercial also failed to receive a motion from the council Wednesday.
The changes were made upon recommendation from borough manager Dave Jarrett based on comments received by the borough and county planning commissions and at a Feb. 28 public hearing. Each council member also submitted his or her own comments on the proposal, Jarrett said.
The council Wednesday also voted to accept the following portions of the originally proposed amendment:
- the Enterprise Center property on South Elmer Avenue and the Val-Chem property, from industrial to business incubator. Councilman Jim Daly abstained from the vote because of his role as a trustee at the Enterprise Center.
- the Furman and Jones Garage property and parcels owned by Parvin Mensch, located on College Hill and Lake Street, from single-family residential to light commercial, with council members Gene Osmun and JoAnn Sabatura voting no.
- South Thomas Avenue from Packer Avenue to the borough's public works building, from light commercial to business incubator.
- the west side of South Elmer Avenue from Packer Avenue to Lockhart Street, from single/double family residential to downtown commercial.
- the Sayre Public Library and Rock Your Style salon on South Elmer Avenue, from single/double family residential to downtown commercial.
- the Epiphany School property on Stevenson Street, from single-family residential to conservation, with Osmun and Sabatura voting no.
- the Original Italian Grille restaurant at North Lehigh Avenue and Spring Street, from light commercial to highway commercial.
- the east side of Spring Street from North Lehigh Avenue to the Milltown bridge, from industrial to highway commercial.
- the west side of Spring Street, from light commercial to highway commercial.
- the east side of North Lehigh Avenue between Mohawk and Bradford streets, from light commercial to highway commercial, with Sabatura voting no.
- the Guthrie pediatrics office and Sayre Health Care Center on North Elmer Avenue, from highway commercial to medical campus.
- two Guthrie-owned vacant parcels on North Elmer Avenue, from multi-family residential to medical campus, with Osmun and Sabatura voting no.
- the Sayre Theatre and adjoining vacant lot, the Sayre First Presbyterian Church and a residence on the corner of Elmer and Packer avenues, from light commercial to downtown commercial, with Sabatura voting no.
The council also voted to advertise amendments creating the business incubator district and changing the floodplain/conservation district to the conservation district.
A proposed amendment to allow animated signs in the commercial and industrial districts was struck from Wednesday's agenda for further council discussion.
Once a revised amendment is drafted, it will be resubmitted to the borough and county planning commissions, who would have 30 days for review and comment. A new public hearing would then be scheduled for the proposal.
Amanda Renko can be reached at (570) 888-9652; or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.