Apartment proposal gets nod

By Patrick Fisher, Staff Writer

Changes are proposed for Schumacher's Hotel and Grill 212 as the New Prague Planning and Zoning Commission recommended for approval a conditional use permit for an apartment.

At the Wednesday, Nov. 17, meeting Planning Director Ken Ondich explained the proposed apartment will be located in what is now the south dining room, known as the Garden Room. City staff has met with John Schumacher, owner of the business, to discuss the proposal. Schumacher and his wife would occupy the approximately 800-square-foot apartment unit.

Ondich said a concern for city staff was allowing a main street apartment. There have been concerns in the past that such units would lead to clutter and children playing along the street. This apartment would not lead to either situation. Staff also conducted research of 10 area cities about main floor units. Five allowed them and five did not.

Ondich noted New Prague's ordinance for apartments located above the first floor of commercial buildings was relevant in that the apartment would need to have:

• Two off-street parking spaces for each unit.

• Security lighting that illuminates the parking area and entries to the units.

• An appropriate area for trash receptacles that must meet the city's ordinance for such areas.

Ondich said the business already has parking on site with two spaces that could be reserved for the apartment. It also already meets the need for trash receptacles.

A required public hearing was held with no objections made.

The commission members said they saw no reason to object. New Prague City Council representative Kay Wilcox asked what would happen to the apartment if the Schumachers sell the building. Ondich said a provision could be included that the apartment be revoked based on occupancy issues.

The permit is scheduled to go before the council at its Monday, Dec. 6, meeting.

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