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Council sticks with 39% impervious recommendation

The Detroit Lakes City Council took the recommendation of the community development committee and limited the addition at the corner of Washington Avenue and West Lake Drive to 39 percent impervious surface.

When the matter of adding 1,500 square feet to the former Giovanni’s building came before the city’s planning commission, the board told landowner Mitch Wimmer that he could be allowed up to 42 percent impervious surface coverage. The reasoning was because Wimmer had planned to make some improvements to water treatment on the site.

Improvements would include a 10-foot wide strip of green space along the north side of the property and a rain garden along the building.

Wimmer said he has no definite business going in the building yet, but did say it would be ready for a food and beverage type business.

Once the issue came before the city’s community development committee though, that group decided to keep Wimmer at the already 39 percent impervious surface. A commercial development is allowed up to 35 percent by ordinance.

Tuesday night at the city council meeting, there was little discussion regarding the issue.

“I understand not wanting to go up,” Alderman G.L. Tucker of the impervious surface, but at least Wimmer would be implementing a rain garden and taking other precautions, he added.

The council, he said, had just approved a permit for the Pine to Palm resort on West Lake Drive to convert the 13 units into seven units that people can purchase. The impervious surface for that lot is at 87 percent, and since nothing is being done to the outside of the buildings, the city didn’t require them to decrease the coverage.

“We passed 87 percent and didn’t ask him to do anything different,” Tucker pointed out.

“We get hung up on numbers. We should be hung up on (treatment),” he added since Wimmer is making an effort to treat water runoff on his property.

Wimmer said he didn’t have any big issue with the 39 percent impervious surface restriction, but he would have appreciated the extra percentage in case he needs it in the future when it comes time to figure out the parking situation if needed.

“We’ll deal with what you guys decide to do but I thought this was a reasonable request,” he said.

The council approved the motion with 39 percent impervious surface.

Also at the city council meeting, the city and MnDOT decided to hold a public meeting April 23 from 5 to 7 p.m. in M State conference room regarding plans on the Highway 10/59 frontage road improvements west of town.

Follow Pippi Mayfield on Twitter at @PippiMayfield.