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Keokuk Considers Business Relocation

Dec 6, 2013

The Keokuk City Council is trying to clear the way for a small business to relocate.

The Keokuk City Council hopes the issuance of a special use permit will clear the way for a local business to move into this building along Washington Street.

RS Tool & Design wants to move out of its current location in Kindustry Park and into a building along Washington Street near HyVee.

The building is currently zoned for commercial use, but the company is considered light manufacturing as it builds machines, tools, dies, guages, and fixtures.

Community Development Director Pam Broomhall says the issue recently went before the city's planning commission.

She says that panel's preference was for the city to change the code to allow small tool & die shops to be included in certain commercial districts.

The planning commission preferred that option to rezoning that one building for light industrial use.

The city council seemed leery about both options Thursday night.

Members raised concerns about the possibility of similar businesses moving downtown if tool & die shops are reclassified to commercial use and about the likelihood of rezoning the one property being considered "spot-zoning."

So in the end, the city council reached a consensus to move in a third direction.

The city council asked Broomhall to draft a special use permit that would allow RS Tool & Design to use the building along Washington Street.

A special use permit has multiple stipulations and requirements to make sure a business does not negativly impact a neighborhood.

Broomhall says she will check with the city attorney to make sure a special use permit is OK for this site before taking the proposal to the Planning Commission.

Both the Planning Commission and the Board of Adjustment must review the permit before it can be issued.