SEMO TIMES to City Council: Re-Zone It Commercial

Aug 30, 2014

Poplar Bluff, Mo. – At this Tuesday’s council meeting, council will discuss workshop item D regarding rezoning a property at the corner of Northwood Dr. and Westmoor Dr.

View the Agenda Item - Workshop Item D
The City Council will review a recommendation from the Planning and Zoning Commission to deny a request to rezone property from RS-2, general residential, to O-1, office professional to operate a dental office as a conforming use. The property is located at 1920 Northwood Drive and the applicant is Jared Beaird/Jared Beaird
Family Dentistry, 1611 Lurlyn Rd.

At the planning and zoning meeting earlier this week, it was clear this is a divisive issue among the neighbors. Jared Beaird purchased the property for his family dentist practice and the neighborhood appears torn as to whether it should happen. Planning and Zoning said no but ultimately it is up to council.

Does the city take a more aggressive stance on commercial development or not? That’s what really is at question here.

1920 Northwood Drive driveway

1920 Northwood Drive driveway – this is what we see in our mind when we think Northwood Neighborhood

Northwood, Sunset, Old Orchard, that’s what we think of when the word Poplar Bluff neighborhoods is brought up. But over the last 40 years Northwood’s west end has been swallowed up by commercial development. Poplar Bluff Square to their north and Jiffy Lube, Heritage Title Company and Duncan & Pierce Law firm on its west.

But just because a house is in a neighborhood, does that really mean what it suggests? Look at what the homeowner sees out their front window or when pulling out of their driveway:

1920 Northwood Drive from property line looking north

1920 Northwood Drive from property line looking north

And it doesn’t look any better to the owner if they look west from that side of their home:

1920 Northwood Drive from property line looking west

1920 Northwood Drive from property line looking west


Should a home in a neighborhood surrounded by commercial zoning on more 180 degrees of his property line, be allowed to rezone into commercial property? In my opinion, Yes. I know that might be an unpopular statement.

This looks like a perfect place for developing a Family Dentist Practice and SEMO TIMES supports the request to rezone this property as O-1 (Office Professional). There are many changes like this that our PB community needs to embrace as we look to grow.

Planning and Zoning voted to deny the request and it is up to City Council to either accept that recommendation or overrule it (probably in two successive meetings).

Streetview by Google allows you to tool around the neighborhood. Take it for a spin, then leave comments below as to what you think the City Council should do.

  1. wrestlefan

    I don’t think it’s a bad idea. Like the article mentioned, over half of the landscape outside the home is commercial development anyway, so it wouldn’t look out of place to rezone the property as O-1 at the edge of the neighborhood.

    Also, it’s not like a Popeye’s Chicken is being built there; just a conveniently located family dental practice.

  2. Alan Buttry

    Somebody is going to have to live next to a commercial use at some point. What about the next adjoining neighbor, then the next. Commercial creep has to stop somewhere and a city street is the best point to separate zoning. There are several spaces available for sale or rent in commercial areas. Besides, this may be a moot point if the subdivision has restrictions.