Douglas County Commission approves request to divide rural property for residential use

photo by: Douglas County

A map from a Douglas County planning report shows two lots, lots three and four, that have been approved to be rezoned for residential uses, and some of the surrounding property divisions.

Douglas County leaders have approved a request to rezone 25 acres currently zoned for agricultural use into residential lots.

The commission voted unanimously as part of its meeting Wednesday to approve a request from property owners Patrick Halpin and Erin Callahan-Halpin to rezone 25 acres at 981 East 1549 Road, roughly 3 miles south of Lawrence, from its current agricultural zoning to a cluster preservation district. The new zoning will allow the property to be divided into up to five residential lots.

The property is located within the third and final tier of the Lawrence urban growth area, meaning it has been designated as an area of future growth for the city but not expected to be incorporated into the city during the range of Plan 2040, the current city and county comprehensive plan. Planning staff recommended the rezoning request for approval, citing in part that residential housing was compatible with the surrounding land uses in that area. However, the planning commission voted 6-2 in May to recommend denial of the request based on concerns that the rezoning went against goals in the comprehensive plan to curb residential growth in rural areas.

In other business, the commission voted unanimously to issue a letter supporting a federal grant application for Kansas Holistic Defenders. The county is considering providing funding to the organization as part of its 2022 budget. The commission did not further discuss the budget on Wednesday, but a public hearing on the budget will occur sometime next month; a date has not yet been set.


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