city of San Antonio

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File #: 19-7610   
Type: Zoning Case
In control: City Council A Session
On agenda: 10/17/2019
Posting Language: ZONING CASE Z-2019-10700216 (Council District 1): Ordinance amending the Zoning District Boundary from “R-6 AHOD” Residential Single-Family Airport Hazard Overlay District to “IDZ-2 AHOD” Medium Intensity Infill Development Zone Airport Hazard Overlay District with Uses Permitted for Eight (8) Dwelling Units on Lot 13 and Lot 14, Block 3, NCB 2076, located at 252 Cornell Avenue. Staff recommends Denial. Zoning Commission recommends Approval. (Associated Plan Amendment PA2019-11600063)
Attachments: 1. Location Map, 2. Site Plan and GPCF, 3. Zoning Minutes, 4. Draft Ordinance

DEPARTMENT: Development Services                     


DEPARTMENT HEAD: Michael Shannon





Zoning Case Z2019-10700216

(Associated Plan Amendment PA2019-11600063)



Current Zoning: “R-6 AHOD” Residential Single-Family Airport Hazard Overlay District


Requested Zoning: “IDZ-2 AHOD” Medium Intensity Infill Development Zone Airport Hazard Overlay District with uses permitted for eight (8) dwelling units



Zoning Commission Hearing Date:  October 1, 2019


Case Manager:  Lorianne Thennes, Planner


Property Owner:  Center City Development, Inc.


Applicant:  Center City Development, Inc.


Representative:  Patrick W. Christensen


Location: 252 Cornell Avenue


Legal Description: Lot 13 and Lot 14, Block 3, NCB 2076


Total Acreage: 0.4154 acres


Notices Mailed

Owners of Property within 200 feet: 24

Registered Neighborhood Associations within 200 feet: Uptown Neighborhood Association 

Applicable Agencies: Solid Waste Management


Property Details

Property History:  The property currently contains two single-family homes, and is also partially vacant. It was part of the original 36 square miles of San Antonio and originally zoned Historic “B” Residence District. It was rezoned to “R-1” Single Family Residence District, according to Ordinance 86704, dated September 25, 1997. Under the 2001 Unified Development Code, established by Ordinance 93881, dated May 3, 2001, the property was converted from “R-1” Single Family Residential District to “R-6” Residential Single-Family District.


Topography: The property does not include any abnormal physical features such as slope or incursion in a flood plain.


Adjacent Base Zoning and Land Uses

Direction: North

Current Base Zoning:  “R-6” and “RM-4”

Current Land Uses: Single-family dwellings


Direction: East 

Current Base Zoning:  “R-6” and “RM-4”    

Current Land Uses: Single-family dwellings


Direction: South     

Current Base Zoning: “I-1”      

Current Land Uses: Collision repair shop and commercial buildings  


Direction: West

Current Base Zoning: “I-1,” “R-6” and “RM-4”

Current Land Uses: Industrial lot, multi-family and single-family dwellings


Overlay and Special District Information: 


All surrounding properties carry the "AHOD" Airport Hazard Overlay District, due to their proximity to an airport or approach path.  The "AHOD" does not restrict permitted uses, but can require additional review of construction plans by both the Development Services Department and the Federal Aviation Administration.



Thoroughfare:  Cornell Avenue

Existing Character:  Local

Proposed Changes: None.


Thoroughfare:  North Brazos Street

Existing Character:  Local

Proposed Changes: None.


Public Transit:  There are VIA bus routes within walking distance of the subject property.


Routes: 2, 82, 88, 95, 96, 97, 202, 282, 288, 296


Traffic Impact: A Traffic Impact Analysis (TIA) is not required. The traffic generated by the proposed development does not exceed the threshold requirements.


Parking Information: The minimum parking requirement for a single-family dwelling is 1 space per unit.






Current: The present zoning designation of “R-6” District accomodates medium- to high-density, single-family residential uses where adequate public facilities and services exist with capacity to serve development. These districts are composed mainly of areas containing single-family dwellings and open area where similar residential development seems likely to occur. Residential single-family provides minimum lot size and density requirements in order to preserve neighborhood character.


Proposed: The proposed “IDZ-2” Infill Development Zoning District provides flexible standards for the development and reuse of underutilized parcels. Urban design standards are required in order maintain a neighborhood commercial scale, to promote pedestrian activity, and to maintain the unique character of the center. Pedestrian circulation is required as are common parking areas.


The applicant proposes 8 residential units.






The property is within a regional center and within a premium transit corridor.



Staff Analysis and Recommendation: Staff recommends Denial. Zoning Commission (8-0) recommends Approval.


Criteria for Review:  According to Section 35-421, zoning amendments shall be based on the approval criteria below.


1.  Consistency: 

The subject property is located within the Midtown Area Regional Plan and is currently designated as “Urban Low Density Residential” in the future land use component of the plan. The requested “IDZ-2 AHOD” base zoning district is not consistent with the future land use designation. The Midtown Area Regional Plan was the result of a 26 month Comprehensive Planning process that was adopted in June 2019. The existing “Urban Low Density Residential” land use designation also allows up to seven (7) dwelling units in “IDZ-1.” The applicant is requesting the land use change to “Medium Density Residential” to rezone to “IDZ-2” for eight (8) dwelling units. This is not appropriate in an area that was established as “Urban Low Density Residential” based on the existing land uses, densities, and community input. Staff recommends Denial. The Planning Commission recommends Approval.


2.  Adverse Impacts on Neighboring Lands: 

Staff finds evidence of likely adverse impacts on neighboring lands in relation to this zoning change request. Changing the land use and zoning as requested by the applicant is not consistent with Midtown Area Regional Plan and development within this neighborhood and would change the character of the area that the community is trying to preserve.


3.  Suitability as Presently Zoned: 

The current “R-6 AHOD” Residential Single-Family Airport Hazard Overlay District is an appropriate zoning for the property and surrounding area. The existing “R-6” base zoning allows adequate density. Additionally, if the applicant were rezoning to “IDZ-1”, it would allow for a density of seven (7) units, while maintaining the land use.


4.  Health, Safety and Welfare: 

Staff has not found indication of likely adverse effects on the public health, safety, or welfare.


5.  Public Policy: 

The proposed rezoning appears to conflict with the following goals, principles, and objectives of the Midtown Area Regional Plan:


Goal 1: Preserve the Midtown Area’s Distinct Character

Goal 8: Improve Outdoor and Nature Experiences



Infill Development Zone (IDZ) provides flexible standards for developments.  IDZ is to encourage and facilitate development on vacant, bypassed lands, or the redevelopment of underutilized buildings of structures, within existing built-up areas. IDZ may be approved as either a base zoning district or an overlay zoning district.  Standards required in an IDZ district shall apply to either IDZ base zoning or the IDZ overlay district except where otherwise specifically stated.  Typically IDZ gives flexibility to parking requirements, lots sizes, and setbacks.


The applicant’s request the Master Plan’s Policy for Neighborhoods - Policy 4a, because it preserves and revitalizes housing and promotes targeted infill housing in neighborhoods, particularly older neighborhoods located inside Loop 410.

The applicant’s request the Master Plan’s Policy for Urban Design -  Policy 1d, because it develops criteria and procedures for infill development which will enhance the character of neighborhoods.

The applicant’s request the Master Plan’s Policy for Urban Design - Policy 4b, because it incentivizes property to encourage development in underutilized urban areas.


6.  Size of Tract: 

The subject property is 0.4154 acres, which could not reasonably accommodate 8 dwelling units.


7.  Other Factors: