Lion's Den not planned; Reynoldsburg to put distance between ‘sensitive uses’ and adult businesses
Contrary to the buzz on social media, a Lion’s Den adult bookstore is not planned for state Route 256 in Reynoldsburg.
City Council heard the first reading of an ordinance Jan. 25 that, if approved, would make it more difficult for adult-oriented businesses to open in the city by increasing the distance between them and “sensitive uses” like schools, parks and residential housing.
The change will increase the minimum distance from 350 feet to 500 feet.
“The changes that we are proposing tonight only increase the distance that any of these businesses would need to be located,” City Attorney Chris Shook said Jan. 25. “This is First Amendment protected speech. We couldn’t zone it out of the city if we wanted to, but we can put in those protections. This is just the city being proactive.”
Because the city must allow adult-oriented business in at least one of its zoning districts, Shook said it is a permitted use in the community commercial area along Route 256, “but as far as I know we have no permit for any adult business in the city or any permit pending.”
Mayor Joe Begeny said by the time the council meeting started, city staff, the council clerk and council members all had received calls and emails from residents, voicing concerns over a development that didn’t exist but was spreading across social media.
“Social media can be a wonderful thing for getting information out but if you do hear something … feel free to give us a call here at City Hall,” Begeny said.
The regulations being amended by council have been in place since 1999, Shook said.
Council is expected to vote on the measure at the Feb. 22 meeting. The next meeting is 6:30 p.m. Feb. 8.