Two Zoning Issues in Faubourg St. John

by Greg Jeanfreau, Zoning Committee Chairman

On Friday 5/10/13, I spent time at City Hall speaking with a staff member for the City Planning Commission. I was able to obtain the file for 3127 Ponce De Leon as it pertains to the BZA meeting on Monday 5/13/13. The parking waivers were approved last and the reason they are re-applying is that their building permits expired after a year and therefore they have to re-apply for the parking waiver. The staff is recommending approval. There is also some documentation of neighbor support.

What is most interesting is that on the second page of the staff report (and I confirmed this with the young lady I spoke with) there is a footnote stating that Ice Cream shops are considered “standard restaurant” uses similar to that of coffee shops. This has been the slippery slope fast food question regarding whether an ice cream shop would create a precedent for fast food chains to move into the neighborhood.

Therefore, my understanding is that this and/or Tutti Fruitti would not be considered fast food and would not set any sort of precedent. I mentioned the Tutti Fruitti location and the CPC staffer confirmed this was the case with that project also. If it were considered fast food, the project would have required variances and applying for a conditional use prior to obtaining their building permits as Fast Food is a different use with heavier requirements. Tutti Fruitti does have their permits, FYI.