San Marcos Planning & Zoning Vote On Designation Of Church As Local Landmark, Grants Two CUPs

“This property is already in the Durham Historic District, but I believe it deserves special recognition,” Spell said. “This is just recognizing this property as being unique architectural and cultural uniqueness of this property.”

By, Terra Rivers, Managing Editor

On Tuesday, October 9, the San Marcos Planning and Zoning Commission discussed several items including two Conditional Use Permits and the designation of a local historic landmark.

In September, the San Marcos Historic Preservation Commission voted to recommend the designation of a local church, Old First Baptist Church, as a local historic landmark.

The San Marcos Main Street program is currently asking the community of San Marcos and people from all over Texas to vote five times a day until October 26 in the hopes of winning a $150,000 Partners in Preservation grant to help preserve and restore the church to its original state.

Main Street requests that everyone vote for San Marcos all five times. At the end of the voting period, the 10 projects with the greatest number of votes will receive $150,000 in grant funding.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, Main Street America and American Express are working together to bring $2 million in preservation funding to projects on America’s Main Streets through a public participation process that will raise awareness of the work being done across the country to revitalize Main Streets and neighborhood districts in small towns, mid-sized cities, and urban centers across America.

During the public hearing, four members of the community spoke in favor of the designation.

Historic Preservation Commission Chair, Griffin Spell, spoke in favor of the designation to commissioners.

“This property is already in the Durham Historic District, but I believe it deserves special recognition,” Spell said. “This is just recognizing this property as being unique architectural and cultural uniqueness of this property.”

Ramika Adams spoke on behalf of herself and the Calaboose African American History museum.

“I’m proud to say that the community has rallied around the restoration of this church,” Adams said. “Since I’ve been here ten years, I have not seen or interacted with the community so much. It’s been so encouraging, and I feel like this is exactly what this community needs, this healing to take place by that building and it trickles into the lives and the hearts of the people in the community.”

A motion to designate the church at 219 W MLK Drive passed with an 8-0 vote. Next, the issue will go before the San Marcos City Council; if council votes to designate the church as a local landmark, it could potentially open up more grant and funding opportunities for the preservation efforts.

Additionally, commissioners held a public hearing for a CUP to sell beer and wine for Cheer and Chow in downtown San Marcos. The CUP was approved by an 8-0 vote with the following staff recommendations:

  1. Permit shall be valid for one year, provided standards are met
  2. The permit shall become effective upon the issuance of the certificate of occupancy
  3. No amplified live music shall be allowed outdoors
  4. The permit shall be posted in the same area and manner as the Certificate of Occupancy

Commissioners also heard a CUP renewal request for Ivar’s River Pub to serve mixed beverages. Commissioner Maxfield Baker recused himself from the item citing he had received a certificate from the establishment. Commissioner Besteygail Rand also recused herself due to living within the 400 feet notification perimeter.  

Ivar’s River Pub’s CUP renewal was approved by a 6-0 vote with the following conditions:

  1. Permit shall be valid for three years, provided standards are met;
  2. The applicant shall retain the current barrier to prevent parking on the adjacent lot;
  3. Hours of operation shall be no later than midnight seven days a week;
  4. Live (acoustic or amplified) music shall be allowed on the property until 9 PM;
  5. The floodlights along the deck are aimed downward toward the patio rather than at the San Marcos River;
  6. The permit shall be posted in the same area and manner as the certificate of occupancy.

During the opening remarks, Commissioner Chair Jim Garber announced that item 4 would not be discussed due to a notification error.

The item will return for public hearing and vote at the November 13 meeting.


 

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