New Albany News

Planning commission nixes kennel on Peter Hoover Road

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The New Albany Planning Commission on Aug. 19 denied a conditional-use permit for a dog kennel at 7891 Peter Hoover Road.

The vote was 2-2, which caused it to fail.

Neil Kirby and Dave Wallace voted in favor of the application and Ray Silverstein and Brad Shockey voted against it. Jon Lucas was absent.

Melissa Cochran requested a conditional-use permit to open Your Divine Canine. The permit would have allowed up to 16 animals at the Peter Hoover Road site, but before voting on the application, planning commission members reduced that number to 10.

Several neighbors asked questions about the project and many said they were concerned about potential noise.

Shockey said he, too, had concerns about the location of the kennel.

"I thought that there were a number of locations in New Albany that are zoned agricultural that might be appropriate for a conditional use of this type but I didn't feel that this location was (appropriate because) it adjoins the Bevelhymer Road park area and smaller residential properties," Shockey said.

Kirby said he voted in favor of the conditional-use permit for the kennel because the land is in a district zoned for agricultural uses.

"If it doesn't go in an (agriculture) zoning, where does it go?" he asked.

Cochran said later last week she would not pursue another location in New Albany because of the vote. She also said New Albany does not have dog parks and does not seem to be "dog-friendly."

Cochran lives in Columbus near Upper Arlington and currently operates the business out of her home, according to draft minutes from the planning commission meeting.

She has been a certified dog trainer for five years and has never had any complaints about noise or smell from the business, the draft minutes said.

In other business Aug. 19, the planning commission voted 4-0 to approve a two-year extension on the final plat for Smith Mill Ventures to develop the Forest Drive office park.

New Albany Planner Stephen Mayer said the plan calls for five office buildings totaling 40,000 square feet.

He said the final plat was approved two years ago and was due to expire.

"With a final development plan, developers have two years to start construction," Mayer said. "Since the final development plan was approved, there's been no construction."

Representatives of Smith Mill Ventures told city officials the office buildings had not been developed because of the slow economy and requested a two-year extension to start construction.

If the two-year extension had not been approved, the developer would have had to apply for approval and pay the same fees, starting the process again, Mayer said.

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