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Shape Places Start Date Still Unknown

April 10, 2014, 5:55 PM by Jared Ransom

Shape Places Start Date Still Unknown

Voters overwhelmingly passed the Shape Places Zoning Ordinance Tuesday.  Now questions about it are just beginning.

"Now, over the last day and a half, a lot of inquiries about, 'What does this mean? We need to come in and meet and talk.'  'What's the effective date of the new ordinance?'" city planner Jeff Schmitt said.

Sioux Falls voters passed a plan that Schmitt says will clarify the city's zoning rules, making it clearer to everyone what can be built in specific parts of town.

"Let's not mislead anybody.  It gives you a property right. As a homeowner, I go 'Good! I know my house is single family and if they have vacant land around me, I should know what that means,'" Schmitt said.

The concerns that Schmitt and the Planning Commission have received since election night are that a project currently underway in the city would soon have to change and fit under the new codes. He says that's not the case.

"If you're going to do a building expansion on your house, if you come in now and you get a permit pulled, it's based upon the codes at the time. If you come in in June, well then Shape Places will be in effect," Schmitt said.

The Sioux Falls City Council will review the election results at next week's meeting and then determine the official start date for Shape Places.

"When citizens are calling, we're like 'It's not effective today. It's not on April 10th, but beginning of May, early May is really when the effective date is,'" Schmitt said.

Even with the unknown start date, Schmitt isn't expecting a rush for permits.

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