Springfield, MO

Log in Subscribe

Commercial, residential not exclusive

Posted online

by Paul Schreiber

SBJ Contributing Writer

Commercial property development in Springfield is increasing rapidly. As businesses establish new addresses or take over properties close to residential areas, concerns arise whether these enterprises will impact the quality of life for nearby residents.

This matter often reflects a timing issue for local residents, centering on which development moved into the area first: business or residential.

"Sometimes I think it's a perceived thing," said Andy Furedy, zoning administrator for Springfield's Zoning and Subdivision Services. "If homes move in next to the retail activity, then it's not perceived as being the negative it is when the retail comes in after the housing."

New commercial development in Springfield is determined by the city's previous zoning of a given site. "If the property is already zoned," Furedy said, "then whatever intensity of development allowed by the zoning ordinance is permitted."

Commercial and residential developments function together best when they exhibit "a good mix," according to Bob McCroskey, broker/owner of Prudential Team Realty. When businesses offer "what appeals to residents" then "retail tends to help residential," he added.

"Chesterfield Village is a good example" of blending retail business and private dwellings, McCroskey said. According to Furedy, this project offers an "example of real mixed-use development." He said he believes "the nearby commercial activities are actually a boon to the residential uses. You can walk, go to the bank, go to a doctor, get an ice cream cone, etc."

On the other hand, the location of businesses in proximity to homes can take its toll on residents.

Commercial activities or business factors affecting residential areas are heavy truck traffic, excessive lighting, production noise, and airborne smells, pollution and debris.

This is why multifamily dwellings

often buffer commercial areas while

single-family dwellings are the farthest away from commercial development, according to Kirk A. Heyle, president of Heyle Realtors and Counseling Services LLC.

A multifamily dwelling is "going to be busier," he said. "It has some complexion like the business, or it's a transition between business and single-family homes."

Another possible drawback for a residence located near a business is the potential increased cost for property and casualty insurance. "On virtually any application for residential property, they usually ask how close it is to a commercial establishment," Heyle said.

Today, Planning and Zoning in Springfield integrates several commercial and residential zone districts. Furedy said the city has "limited business" districts where small retail outlets are scattered throughout a neighborhood; "general retail" locations, as along Battlefield, Campbell or Glenstone; "highway commercial" areas for outdoor retailing of items like cars, boats or heavy machinery; "commercial services" areas offering services from plumbing to large print shops; and the "center city" districts, such as downtown Springfield, Walnut Street and Commercial Street.

These five retail districts function with the city's four residential zone districts and give it its overall character. Residential areas are divided into single-family housing; duplex and townhouse areas; low-, medium-, and high-density apartment areas; and mobile-home districts, Furedy said.

Since 1995, the city has begun mitigating the impact from new commercial building on its residents. "One thing that makes non-residential development in the city a little easier," Furedy said, "is the fact now that our new zoning ordinance requires a minimum amount of open space."

This policy produces transition zones that separate businesses from residences. "If you go to larger communities that are very much into greenspace you can see very easily how even an industrial or office complex can fit into nearly anywhere with appropriate screening," he added.

[[In-content Ad]]


No comments on this story |
Please log in to add your comment
Editors' Pick
Open for Business: Rebar Kitchen & Taproom

A pair of food industry veterans teamed up to open Rebar Kitchen & Taproom; May 2 marked the grand opening for the new headquarters of 27North Inc.; and the first brick-and-mortar shop for Springfield Trading Co. launched.

Most Read
Update cookies preferences