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Downtown design standards discussed at Grandview meeting

GRANDVIEW - Locations of parking lots and how much of a window can be covered up with advertising were just some of the items discussed at last night's Grandview City Council meeting.

The city is in the process of creating a document that will spell out all design standards for downtown Grandview. For the past year the city has been working with architect Sheri Brockway to come up with these standards. At last night's meeting Brockway reviewed several changes to the 'living document'.

The reason for the revisions was to clear up any confusion with the standards, according to Grandview Public Works Director Cus Arteaga.

"We want this document to be easy to understand," he told the council. "We want it to be able to help improve downtown."

One area of confusion cleared up was the parking requirements in the central business district. Property owners located in the central business district are not required to provide off-street parking but if they decide to add a parking lot then there are some rules to follow.

Brockway told the council those businesses on primary pedestrian streets (Division and Second streets) need to build any parking areas behind their business. In case of any redevelopment all parking lots will be relocated behind the buildings where feasible.

Brockway said the plan is designed to keep the business store fronts on the sidewalks.

Another revision added to the plan was a requirement that any new trees added to property in the downtown area must be approved by an arborist.

Signage was also discussed at last night's meeting. Any new signs put up would have to have approval from the city. This is to ensure that the signage stays true to the overall design approach. The color of an individual sign should not overpower the building or the consistency of downtown Grandview.

"A sign in hot pink on a tan building would be inappropriate," Brockway explained.

The artistic elements of the sign standards are meant to encourage business owners to use interesting, creative and unique approaches to any design of signs.

Councilman Mike Bren suggested to Mayor Norm Childress and council that some sort of governing body should be formed to help settle any questions about the design standards.

One person's idea of what is appropriate might be different from another's, Bren said. A committee could help keep the standards uniform.

No action was taken on the revisions and the plan is expected to get reviewed by block captains from the different blocks in the central business district.

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