City of Reno
Nevada

Staff Report - Planning Commission
11994

Staff Report (For Possible Action - Recommendation to City Council): Case No. LDC20-00040 (WCSD Stead Blvd Zone Change) – A request has been made for a zoning map amendment from Mixed Use/North Virginia Street Transit Corridor Overlay District (MU/NVTC) to Public Facility (PF). The ±34.1 acre site is located on the east side of Stead Boulevard, ±100 feet south of its intersection with Silver Lake Road. The site has Master Plan land use designation of Public/Quasi-Public (PQP).

Information

Department:Community Development - PlanningSponsors:
Category:OrdinanceWards:Ward 4

Staff Report Formal Body

Ward #:

4

Case No.:

LDC20-00040 (WCSD Stead Blvd Zone Change)

Applicant:

Washoe County School District

APN:

550-020-05

Request:

A request has been made for a zoning map amendment from Mixed Use/North Virginia Street Transit Corridor Overlay District (MU/NVTC) to Public Facility (PF).

Location:

The ±34.1 acre site is located on the east side of Stead Boulevard, ±100 feet south of its intersection with Silver Lake Road.  The site has Master Plan land use designation of Public/Quasi-Public (PQP).

Proposed Motion:

Based upon compliance with the applicable findings, I move to recommend that City Council approve the zoning map amendment by ordinance.

 

Background: The subject site consists of a single ±34.1 acre parcel located on the east side of Stead Boulevard, ±100 feet south of its intersection with Silver Lake Road.  The site is located in the Mixed Use/North Virginia Street Transit Corridor Overlay (MU/NVTC) zoning district.  The site is primarily developed with two public primary school facilities (O’Brien Middle School and Stead Elementary School).  With the adoption of the ReImagine Reno Master Plan, the subject site was re-designated from Special Planning Area to Public/Quasi-PublicThe requested zoning map amendment from MU/NVTC to Public Facility (PF) would result in a shift from previously adopted Mixed Use to PF development standards in support of the recently adopted Master Plan (Exhibit A).  The PF zone conforms to the current Public/Quasi-Public Master Plan designation, whereas the current MU/NVTC zone does not.

 

Analysis: Per RMC, the current MU/NVTC zoning designation provides for a wide variety of residential, commercial, recreational and entertainment, lodging, institutional, and industrial uses and the PF zone is generally more restrictive on these types of uses (Exhibit B).  Public/private primary and secondary schools are allowed in both the current MU/NVTC and proposed PF zoning districts.  RMC requires that development applications for public/private primary or secondary schools first obtain approval of a site plan review (SPR), but are exempt from special use permit (SUP) requirements for residential adjacency.  Future development of nonresidential projects in both the current and proposed zones will be required to comply with standards of RMC 18.12.304 (Residential Adjacency Standards). 

 

Zoning Map Amendment Findings: As set forth in Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) Section 278.250(2) (Zoning Districts and Regulations), the Planning Commission and City Council are required to find that the zoning map amendment is in accordance with the Master Plan and is designed to meet the following requirements, as applicable.  The following zoning map amendment findings analysis evaluates the appropriateness of the PF zoning designation for the subject site and not the suitability of a particular land use.

a.      To preserve the quality of air and water resources.

The proposed zoning map amendment will not have an impact on air quality or water resources.  Proposals for future development will be required to comply with established air quality standards in place at time of development.   

b.      To promote the conservation of open space and the protection of other natural and scenic resources from unreasonable impairment.

The subject site is currently developed and this zoning map amendment will not impact open space or impair any natural or scenic resources. 

c.       To consider existing views and access to solar resources by studying the height of new buildings which will cast shadows on surrounding residential and commercial developments.

RMC does not identify a maximum building height or number of stories for the current MU/NVTC zone, but limits the proposed PF zone to a maximum of three stories.  RMC 18.12.304 (Residential Adjacency Standards) will apply to future nonresidential development since there is an existing single-family residential subdivision located directly east of the site in the Sky Vista Planned Unit Development (PUD).  A 1:3 height-to-setback ratio will be required for any portion of building height exceeding 15 feet since the subject site exceeds two acres.  In addition, future development will be evaluated for compliance with RMC 18.12.301 (Shading of Parks and Residences), which restricts the casting of shadows onto residential structures for buildings greater than 35 feet in height.  No impacts to existing views or solar resources are anticipated at this time.     

d.      To reduce the consumption of energy by encouraging the use of products and materials which maximize energy efficiency in the construction of buildings.

Energy consumption and the use of energy efficient products are addressed through code compliance when new construction or improvements to the subject site are proposed.

e.       To provide for recreational needs.

The subject site is currently developed with two public schools that provide recreational areas such as sport fields and game courts for school activities.  The requested change to PF will still allow for these uses and recreational activities for the community are not anticipated to be impacted by this request.

f.        To protect life and property in areas subject to floods, landslides and other natural disasters.

The requested zoning map amendment will not subject the site or surrounding properties to floods, landslides or natural disasters.  The subject site is located in the Zone X (unshaded) flood zone designation or areas of minimal flood hazard, as identified by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), indicating the site is unlikely to flood.  Future development will be required to mitigate all storm water flows.  There are no known seismic faults that run through the property or any indication that the site has previously been impacted by natural disasters. 

g.      To conform to the adopted population plan, if required by NRS 278.170 (Coordination of master plan; Adoption of all or parts).

The requested zoning map amendment conforms to the adopted Master Plan land use and will encourage development of public facilities to support the general population and community.

h.      To develop a timely, orderly and efficient arrangement of transportation and public facilities and services, including public access and sidewalks for pedestrians, and facilities and services for bicycles.

Access, Traffic and Circulation: The subject site is currently accessed from Stead Boulevard and Silver Lake Road.  A traffic analysis is not required with zoning map amendment applications. However, uses that are allowed within the MU/NVTC zoning district typically generate greater traffic volumes as compared to uses allowed within the PF zone (Exhibit B).  At the time that new development is proposed, the request would need to demonstrate compliance with all aspects of the RMC, which would ensure that traffic impacts are evaluated and adequate facilities for pedestrians and bicycles are provided. 

 

The subject site is located near an existing public transit route and several bus stops located along Silver Lake Road just north of the site.  Existing sidewalk infrastructure is in-place along Stead Boulevard and Silver Lake Road with pedestrian walkways extending to the existing facilities.  Bicycle lanes are in-place along Silver Lake Road and bicycle parking is available on-site. 

 

Public Improvements: Sewer flows generated from future development will be conveyed to the Reno-Stead Water Reclamations Facility (RSWRF) for treatment.  Future development will be required to demonstrate that all on-site and off-site infrastructure improvements are adequate to serve the facilities.  A sewer will-serve letter from the City of Reno will be required for new development. 

 

Public Safety (Exhibit C): The Reno Police Department (RPD) reviewed the request and did not identify any concerns related to the requested zoning map amendment. Comments stated that future development requests will be reviewed for consistency with applicable Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED) principles.

 

The Reno Fire Department (RFD) provided comments noting that all future development will be required to comply with the adopted edition of the International Fire Code as amended and adopted by the City of Reno at the time development is proposed.  Such compliance includes, but is not be limited to, fire department access, fire sprinkler systems, fire alarm systems and fire hydrant placement.

 

i.        To ensure that the development on land is commensurate with the character of the physical limitations of the land.

 

The subject site is relatively flat and mostly developed.  Specific site considerations related to topography, drainageways and other potential physical characteristics of the land will be evaluated at the time that specific development is proposed.

j.        To take into account the immediate and long-range financial impact of the application of particular land to particular kinds of development, and the relative suitability of the land for development.

Due to the fact that the subject site currently contains two existing public schools that are tax exempt, a fiscal impact analysis was not relevant to this application.  The existing schools provide a wide range of benefits to the community beyond fiscal implications typically outlined by a fiscal impact analysis and no negative fiscal impacts are anticipated as a result of this request.

k.      To promote health and the general welfare.

Approval of the zoning map amendment would not negatively impact health or general welfare and all health and safety laws are required to be met with future development.  The types of uses allowed in the PF zone will promote health and general welfare by providing necessary public facilities for the community.

l.        To ensure the development of an adequate supply of housing for the community, including the development of affordable housing.

Although allowed residential uses will be more restrictive with the proposed change to PF, the Public/Quasi-Public Master Plan designation promotes public facility uses and development that are necessary to support the community and will provide additional benefits to any increase in area housing supply.

m.   To ensure the protection of existing neighborhoods and communities, including the protection of rural preservation neighborhoods.

Adjacent land uses, master plan and zoning designations are shown in the table below:

 

AREA DESCRIPTION

 

Land Use

Master Plan Designation

Zoning

North

Medical office, multifamily

Public/Quasi-Public (PQP)

MU/NVTC

South

Single-family

Suburban Mixed-Use (SMU)

MU/NVTC

East

Single-family

Parks, Greenways, and Open Space (PGOS), Single-family Neighborhood (SF)

PUD – Sky Vista

West

Various commercial uses

Suburban Mixed-Use (SMU)

MU/NVTC

 

The application is consistent with the Master Plan land use designation and appears to be an appropriate transitional zoning designation between residential uses to the east and various commercial uses to the west.  Also, the public facilities allowed with the PF zone are generally supportive to existing neighborhoods.

n.      To promote systems which use solar or wind energy.

Solar energy systems are currently in-place and serve the existing schools and are not anticipated to be removed.  Future development will be required to meet any energy standards required by code.

o.      To foster the coordination and compatibility of land uses with any military installation in the city, county or region, taking into account the location, purpose and stated mission of the military installation.

Military base commanders are notified of all zoning map amendments and no comments were received when this report was prepared.  Any comments received will be forwarded to the Planning Commission for consideration.

 

Master Plan: The subject site has a Public/Quasi-Public Master Plan land use designation and is located on a Suburban Corridor per the Structure Plan Framework.  The requested zoning map amendment from MU/NVTC to PF conforms to the Public/Quasi-Public land use designation and is consistent with the following applicable Master Plan policies:

·         1.5D: Education – Identify ways to support education programs of Washoe County School District, UNR, TMCC, and other educational institutions and further advance their missions;

·         2.1A: Growth Tiers - Support the efficient use of existing public facilities and services by prioritizing development, infrastructure improvements, and public investments (Identified Priority 3 – Areas that are located within existing city limits as of adoption of this Master Plan and have existing infrastructure and services in place);

·         2.4K: Washoe County School District – Collaborate with the Washoe County School District in planning for the design and location of new public schools in areas that advance the city’s growth priorities, and the disposition and reuse of any schools that might become redundant in the city and its SOI.

 

Agency Comments (Exhibit C): Comments from the Reno Police Department (RPD) are discussed above.  Comments from Washoe County Health District - Air Quality Management Division (WCHD-AQMD) are attached for reference and note general region-wide air quality concerns.  No other comments were received from reviewing agencies at the time this report was prepared.  Any future comments received will be forwarded to the Planning Commission upon receipt.

 

Neighborhood Advisory Board (NAB): This project was reviewed by the Ward 4 NAB on February 20, 2020.  No written comments were received by staff at the time this report was prepared.  Any future comments will be forwarded to the Planning Commission upon receipt.

 

Legal Requirements:

 

NRS 278.250(2)                            Zoning Districts and Regulations

 

Findings: As set forth in Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) 278.250(2) (Zoning Districts and Regulations), the Planning Commission and City Council shall find that the zoning map amendment is in accordance with the Master Plan and be designed to meet the following requirements as applicable:

 

a.              To preserve the quality of air and water resources.

 

b.      To promote the conservation of open space and the protection of other natural and scenic resources from unreasonable impairment.

 

c.       To consider existing views and access to solar resources by studying the height of new buildings which will cast shadows on surrounding residential and commercial developments.

 

d.      To reduce the consumption of energy by encouraging the use of products and materials which maximize energy efficiency in the construction of buildings.

 

e.       To provide for recreational needs.

 

f.        To protect life and property in areas subject to floods, landslides and other natural disasters.

 

g.      To conform to the adopted population plan, if required by NRS 278.170.

 

h.      To develop a timely, orderly and efficient arrangement of transportation and public facilities and services, including public access and sidewalks for pedestrians, and facilities and services for bicycles.

 

i.        To ensure that the development on land is commensurate with the character of the physical limitations of the land.

 

j.        To take into account the immediate and long-range financial impact of the application of particular land to particular kinds of development, and the relative suitability of the land for development.

 

k.      To promote health and the general welfare.

 

l.        To ensure the development of an adequate supply of housing for the community, including the development of affordable housing.

 

m.    To ensure the protection of existing neighborhoods and communities, including the protection of rural preservation neighborhoods.

 

n.      To promote systems which use solar or wind energy.

 

  1. To foster the coordination and compatibility of land uses with any military installation in the city, county or region, taking into account the location, purpose and stated mission of the military installation.