P&Z approves rezone despite neighbors' objections
By Tracy L. Lund
September 22, 2006 | SMITHFIELD -- Despite complaints
from several residents, a request to rezone property
in southwest Smithfield passed after much debate by
the Planning and Zoning Commission.
The property, located at 287 South 300 West, is currently
zoned Residential Agricultural-1 acre. David R. Lillywhite
requested that the property be rezoned as Single Family
Residential-12,000 sq. ft., in order to create three
new building lots for homes.
Residents of this Smithfield neighborhood expressed
their concerns at the meeting. Ron Nielson, whose home
borders the property, came to this meeting to find out
what his rights were in regard to speaking out against
"What rights do I have as a property owner?" Nielson
said. "I want to know what my boundaries are." Nielson
said he would like to keep horses on his one-acre lot
as well as keep a yard where his kids can play.
"I don't want three houses squeezed between me and
the corner," he said. "I wouldn't mind one home, but
I am opposed to something bigger."
Lillywhite argued that rezoning the property and tearing
down some of the old outbuildings would clean up the
area, making it look nicer.
Another opponent of the rezone, George Downs, has
lived in the area for 20 years. "I would like to see
it cleaned up," Downs said, "but not at the expense
of other homeowners."
After the meeting was closed to the public the commission
debated the rezone. Commissioner Ed Lawlor wondered
if the landowners would feel better if the lots were
zoned to 20,000 square feet each, so instead of three
new homes there would only be two.
Chairman Clark C. Draper said the city will eventually
have to rezone to greater density anyway. "We made it
part of the general plan. We can't just change our minds
because it's happened sooner than we thought it would."
Commissioner David Price made a motion to deny the
rezone but it died for lack of a second. Commissioner
Rik Vernon then made a motion to approve the rezone,
which was seconded by Commissioner Barbara Kent. The
motion was passed by a 5-1 vote, with Price dissenting.
Draper said the City Council will have the final vote
on whether to rezone. The planning and zoning commission
can only make a recommendation to the council.