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Parking at USC school

By Staff | Mar 1, 2015

The construction of the new school site for United South Central has been an adjustment for everyone in the city of Wells not just the students.

Last week at the Wells City ?Council meeting, a representative from the gun club was in attendance to discuss the issue of parking for the upcoming gun club show.

The show has been held at USC in past years, but now with the new school site there is a new issue with parking.

When the new school was built, 11th and 6th streets were posted as no parking zones, due to the narrower width of the street.

Jim Moll, a Wells Rifle and Pistol Club member, requested allowing parking on those streets for the weekend of March 14 and 15 for the firearms show.

“This event is attended by more than 3,500 people each year over the two-day period,”?Moll says. “Finding space for them to park is going to be an issue.”

Prior to the meeting, mayor Ron Gaines spoke to police chief Jim Ratelle about the request.

“Jim said we could just put bags over the no parking signs for that weekend,”?Gaines explained. “He didn’t think it would be a problem since we haven’t had much snow this winter.”

However, the council was apprehensive to approve this request because parking has also been an issue for school related events, such as sports and concerts.

“I can see both sides of it Jim can cover the signs but is that going to flow over to every football game, every concert, every event at the school?” Gaines asked.

City administrator Robin Leslie explained that when the new school was being constructed, the number of parking spaces was specified in the permit. However, during the process some of the planned spaces were ruled out.

“This is not a city created problem,” Leslie said. “The school took away the parking; the school is going to need more parking.”

Moll added that while he understands the city may be setting a precedence by approving the gun club’s request, other groups will be coming to ask them the same thing anyways.

Council member John Herman thought the request should be approved by the council and just have the signs covered for this particular event.

“Those are school events this is public. If the school comes for school events, that is their issue,”?he said.

The council voted and finally approved the request on the grounds that this is a public event and also agreed that an extra part-time officer should be on duty that day for traffic control.

The City Council also made some decisions on an ordinance after holding a second reading.

The accessory building and structure ordinance was being reviewed in order to update the wording.

“I?thought some language needed clarification,” Leslie said.

She presented the council with two options on how homeowners could interpret parts of the ordinance pertaining to a building’s footprint.

The first option stated the footprint should not cover 35 percent of the impervious area of the lot, the detached accessory building should not cover more square feet than that of the main structure.

“This option is the most restrictive,” Leslie said.

The second option stated that a residential accessory building would be limited to 1,000 square feet no matter the size of the house.

“The intent of the new ordinance is not promoting multiple 1,000 square foot buildings on large lots,” she explained.

The council discussed the options and decided the less restrictive choice seemed more appropriate.

However, the members decided to modify the option presented.

“I think we should go up to 1,200 square feet and keep the 35 percent rule,”?Herman suggested.

The council members voted and agreed to change the ordinance to state that structures can go up to 1,200 both houses and accessory structures as long as the homeowner does not exceed 35 percent coverage of the total lot.