The Gainesville City Plan Board will have their monthly meeting at the City Hall Auditorium on June 27 at 6:30 p.m. to discuss future zoning and land use decisions.
Andrew Persons, the interim director of the city’s Department of Doing, says the goal for the meeting is to open the floor to public discussion about requests for zoning changes, regulation changes and special use permits.
“Overall, the goal is to be able to advise the City Commission on issues of land use and planning,” Persons said.
One issue set to be discussed at this meeting is increasing the number of apartment units being built per square acre at Midtown, Persons said. In addition, six to seven other issues will be outlined in greater detail when the agenda is available online within the next week.
The particular discussion to be addressed is in reference to a new apartment complex in Midtown, which will be located where The Swamp restaurant currently stands, as well as a block north of it. This complex will also be considered a mixed-use area, as it will contain both businesses and residential areas, Persons said.
“The reason for increasing an area’s residential density is primarily a financial one,” Persons said. “That way, landlords can have more residential units to rent out.”
For citizens who may want to express their opinion on the issue at the meeting, Persons says staff reports will be accessible in addition to the agenda through the city’s website.
Anyone who wants to know more information beforehand is welcome to talk with city staff members in person, or via phone, email or the interactive chat function on their website, Persons said.
“These meetings are really just meant to review and make approvals that are consistent with both the city’s ordinances and its values,” Persons said.
David Haas, a 20-year-old UF biomedical engineering junior, questioned whether it would even be worth it focus on expanding the number of apartments in this particular area.
“I imagine it’ll be expensive to live there either way, but if people are willing to pay for it, I guess it’s a good idea,” Haas said.