The Brenham Planning and Zoning Commission on Monday recommended approval of allowing a day care facility at the former site of a catering business.
Commissioners unanimously voted in favor of authorizing Angie Wheeler to turn the former location of Design II at 1200 South Austin Street into a day care. Wheeler seeks to renovate the current 7,500 square foot building for use as a facility to care for up to 105 children, ages infant to 12 years old.
Project Planner Shauna Laauwe said the property is located in the B-1 district, zoned for local business and residential mixed use. Due to a variety of reasons, licensed kindergartens and nursery schools are only allowed as specific uses.
The property will have 23 parking spaces, including 10 for staff members and one handicap-accessible space. Fencing will be required at the site, per city regulations. There are currently no plans to expand the site, but if there are at a later time, they would need a variance from the Board of Adjustment.
The planned hours of operation for the daycare are Monday to Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Commissioner Dr. Deanna Alfred asked what the potential is for traffic backup with Alton Elementary School nearby. Development Services Director Stephanie Doland said Austin Street serves as a collector road, so it can handle an increase in traffic. Planning Technician Kim Hodde said the only time there might be congestion is in the morning, as children at daycares are typically picked up later in the afternoon than children at schools.
Safety concerns were shared by two residents, who asked what would be done to protect children with the daycare’s proximity to Hogg Branch and a nearby drainage channel. Laauwe said Wheeler intends to put a two-foot line of shrubs along the edge of Hogg Branch. Doland added that the city has received grants for drainage improvements and hopes to address this area in the near future. For the drainage channel, Doland said she would get in touch with city officials to rectify the issue.
Also on Monday, the commission approved a city-led request to change the zoning around Brenham ISD’s Pride Academy on South Market Street, as well as the Brenham ISD bus barn and the former site of Brenham Bible Church on East Sixth Street, from R-1 single-family use and/or R-2 mixed residential use to B-1 mixed residential and local business use.
The rezoning of the 16.7 acres is to ensure all existing land uses are legally conforming uses and to align with the city’s future land use plan approved as part of the comprehensive plan.