CHAPTER 9-10. COMMERCIAL (C) DISTRICTS 

Sec. 9-10-1. Purpose.

Sec. 9-10-2. Permitted uses.

Sec. 9-10-3. General regulations.

Sec. 9-10-4. Downtown district--Parking.

Sec. 9-10-5. Developments of community significance.


Sec. 9-10-1. Purpose.

This district is designed to stabilize, improve and protect the characteristics of those areas providing commercial commodities and services.


Sec. 9-10-2. Permitted uses.

The following uses and their accessory uses are permitted outright:

TABLE INSET:


Commercial Zoning Districts    C-G
General
   
C-D
Downtown
   
C-O
Office
   
C-N
Neighborhood
   
C-R
Rural
   
Residential Categories             
Agriculture    N    N    N    N    P   
Single-Family Dwellings    P    P    P    P    P   
Accessory Dwelling Units    S    S    N    S    S   
Dwellings Above or Below Businesses    P, L(1)    P, L(1)    P, L(1)    P, L(1)    P, L(1)   
Duplexes    N    N    N    N    N   
Personal care homes    S    S    S    S    S   
Multifamily Dwellings    P, L(1)    P, L(1)    P, L(1)    P, L(1)    P, L(1)   
Class "A" Manufactured Homes    N    N    N    N    P, L(10)   
Class "B" Manufactured Homes    N    N    N    N    N   
Commercial Categories             
Home Occupation    P    P    P    P    P   
Sales of products grown on site    N    N    N    N    P   
Hostels    P    P    P    P    P   
Hotels    P    P    N    L(4)    N   
Motels    P    N    N    N    N   
Bed and Breakfast    P    P    P    P    P   
Retail Sales And Service    P    P    L(2)    L(3)    L(4)   
Convenience Store    P, L(8)    S    S    P, L(8)    P, L(8)   
Theaters (less than 1,000 seats)    P    P    N    N    N   
Restaurant or Bar    P    P    N    P    P   
Drive-Through Facility    P, L(7)    N    N    S, L(7)    N   
Professional Services and Office    P    P    L(4)    L(3)    L(4)   
Quick Vehicle Servicing    P    N    N    N    N   
Vehicle Repair    P    P    N    N    P   
Auto and RV Sales    P, L(8)    N    N    N    N   
Laundry Facilities    P, L(8)    P    S    P, L(8)    P   
Equestrian Facilities    N    N    N    N    P   
Commercial Outdoor Recreation    P    N    N    N    P   
Indoor Recreation    P    P    N    N    N   
Major Event Entertainment    S    S    N    N    S   
Commercial Parking Structures or Lots    S    S, L(5)    N    N    N   
Administrative or Research Facilities    P    P    P    L(4)    L(4)   
Broadcasting or production Studios    P    P    N    P    P   
Temporary Uses    P    P    P    P    P   
Industrial Categories             
Printing/Publishing    P    P    N    N    N   
Bakeries    P    P    N    L(2)    L(2)   
Bottling Plants    P    P    N    L(2)    L(2)   
Manufacture of Non-Odiferous Foods    N    N    N    N    N   
Feed Lots and Slaughterhouses    N    N    N    N    N   
Food Processing    L(6)    N    N    N    N   
Light Manufacturing    L(6)    L(6)    N    N    L(6)   
Heavy Manufacturing    N    N    N    N    N   
Wholesale Sales    P    P    N    N    P   
Wholesale Nurseries    N    N    N    N    P   
Distribution Center    P    N    N    N    P   
Outdoor Storage    N    N    N    N    N   
Wholesale Storage And Distribution    N    N    N    N    N   
Self-Service Storage    P    N    N    N    N   
Construction Materials Sales    P    N    N    N    N   
Junk Yards and Auto Wrecking    N    N    N    N    N   
Kennels    P    N    N    N    P   
Veterinary Clinics    P    N    S    S    P   
Landfills, Commercial Incinerators, Transfer Stations    N    N    N    N    N   
Institutional Categories             
Basic Utilities    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   
Community Service    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   
Parks And Open Areas    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   
Churches    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   
Semi-Public Halls, Clubs, and Lodges    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   
Business/Trade Schools    P, L(9)    P    L(4)    L(4)    P   
Day Care, Kindergarten, Elementary, Middle, and High School    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   
Colleges    P, L(9)    P    L(4)    L(4)    P   
Nursing Homes    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   
Hospital    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   
Medical Centers    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   
Cemeteries    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   
Mortuaries    P, L(9)    P    P    P    P   

Legend:

P = Permitted outright

S = Subject to approval under the special use procedures section

N = Prohibited use

L(1) = Permitted only on second story and above or in the basement level of the structure. Multifamily residential uses arranged in any other manner on a commercially-zoned property are permitted only as a special use permit.

L(2) = Uses are limited to no more than 2,500 square feet of gross floor area per lot.

L(3) = Uses are limited to no more than 10,000 square feet of gross floor area per use, except grocery stores which may have 30,000 square feet of gross floor area, with a maximum of 30,000 square feet of gross floor area per building; provided however multifamily dwellings and dwellings above businesses are permitted under L(1) above. Any development exceeding these parameters shall be reviewed following the Type IV procedure specified in chapter 9-4.

L(4) = Uses are limited to no more than 10,000 square feet of gross floor area per lot.

L(5) = Parking in more than 50 percent of the ground floor in a parking structure is not permitted.

L(6) = Light manufacturing of products sold on site permitted, area of manufacture not to exceed 1,500 square feet.

L(7) = Drive-through facilities are not permitted in these zones when located on Level One corridors, based on the Athens-Clarke County Corridor Designations Chart, as provided in section 9-25-8 J.

L(8) = Parking areas are permitted between the building and the street, provided that landscaping is included adjacent to the street pursuant to subsection 9-30-9 E.6. of this title.

L(9) = No more than 25 percent of required parking spaces are permitted between the building and the street.

L(10) = Class "A" Manufactured Homes on individual lots are permitted, subject to the following criteria:

1.   The portion of the lot upon which the manufactured home is to be located shall not exceed a slope of ten percent following excavation or fill.

2.   The manufactured home shall be multi-sectional, no less than 24 feet in width, and have a minimum enclosed floor area of 1,000 square feet.

3.   The manufactured home shall have a roof pitch of a minimum of three feet in height for each 12 feet in width.

4.   The manufactured home shall have no metal siding and shall have wood, wood-product, or vinyl siding and composition or metal roofing.

5.   The manufactured home shall be placed on an excavated and back-filled foundation, and the foundation shall be fully enclosed.

6.   The foundation area of the manufactured home shall be fully skirted in masonry.

(Ord. of 12-5-2000, § 1; Ord. of 5-7-02, § 1; Ord. of 4-1-2003, § 1; Ord. of 12-2-2003, § 3; Ord. of 8-2-2005, § 1)


Sec. 9-10-3. General regulations.

General regulations for all C zones are contained in the table below:

TABLE INSET:


Table 9-10-3    C-G
General
   
C-D
Downtown
   
C-O
Office
   
C-N
Neighborhood
   
C-R
Rural
   
Maximum residential density (bedrooms per gross acre)    24    200    16    16    16   
Minimum lot area    2,500 sq. ft.    None    5,000 sq. ft.    5,000 sq. ft.    20,000 sq. ft.   
Minimum lot width    50 ft.    None    50 ft.    50 ft.    100 feet   
Minimum lot depth    50 ft.    None    50 ft.    50 ft.    200 feet   
Minimum front yard  1    None    None    10 ft.    10 ft.    20 feet   
Minimum side yard    None    None    6 feet    6 feet    6 feet   
Minimum side yard, adjacent to street    None    None    6 feet    6 feet    6 feet   
Minimum yard when abutting residential zone    10 feet    None    10 feet, plus one foot for each foot of building height above 30 feet.    10 feet, plus one foot for each foot of building height above 30 feet.    10 feet, plus one foot for each foot of building height above 30 feet.   
Minimum residential unit size    450 sq. ft.    450 sq. ft.    450 sq. ft.    450 sq. ft.    450 sq. ft.   
Maximum FAR    1.5    5.0    0.75    0.75    0.25   
Maximum lot coverage, except agricultural buildings    80%    100%    65%    75%    35%   
Minimum landscaped area    20%    0%    35%    25%    65%   
Maximum building height    65 feet    100 feet    40 feet    65 feet    65 feet   

1  Unless otherwise specified in section 9-15-9.

(Ord. of 12-5-2000, § 1; Ord. of 6-5-2001, § 11; Ord. of 11-6-2001, § 2; Ord. of 9-3-2002, § 2)


Sec. 9-10-4. Downtown district--Parking.

In all areas within the C-D district, all uses other than residential and hotel uses are not required to provide off-street parking or loading areas. Residential uses are required to provide one space per dwelling unit for one and two bedroom dwelling units. Three and four bedroom dwelling units shall comply with the parking standards established in chapters 9-25 and 9-30. Hotel uses are required to provide one space per guestroom. Leasing of parking facilities for residential and hotel uses in an amount sufficient to meet the requirements of this title is permitted as long as the parking facilities are no more than 1,500 feet from the residential or hotel use.

(Ord. of 12-5-2000, § 1; Ord. of 6-5-2001, § 11.1)


Sec. 9-10-5. Developments of community significance.

The purpose of reviewing developments of community significance is to provide for detailed review of commercial uses which have the potential for significant impact to the environment, to the value and use of the adjacent properties, public water and sewer services, roadway capacity and traffic patterns, the economy of Athens-Clarke County, or the public health, safety, and general welfare of Athens-Clarke County residents. This review is designed to ensure that future land uses are suitable to the demandsand needs of the residents of Athens-Clarke County.

A.   Application of section.  The provisions of this section shall apply to uses in the Commercial-General (C-G) zone that result in commercial developments totaling 200,000 square feet or more of gross leasable area; or uses that result in a building of 150,000 square feet or more of gross leasable area, whether by new construction or by expansion of existing uses; or land disturbance of 20 acres or more; and are determined to exceed additional thresholds defined in section 9-10-5 C. 

B.   Submittal requirements.  The following information shall be submitted in addition to the other submittal information required by this title: 

1.   A detailed description of the proposed project and its design features;

2.   Potential impact on existing and projected traffic conditions;

3.   Impact on utilities and public services, including water, sewage, storm drains, solid waste disposal, police and fire protection, emergency services, schools, and other public services;

4.   Impact on the physical and ecological characteristics of the site and surrounding land, including wetlands, floodplain, vegetation, wildlife habitat, and other environmental conditions;

5.   Impact on the community, including but not limited to scenic, historic, or archaeological conditions, with regard to scale, placement, lighting, landscaping, signage, parking, use of open space and design of buildings and structures.

C.   Review thresholds for developments of community significance.  Developments of community significance within this section will be reviewed based on the following thresholds. 

1.   Level I uses are those that do not exceed the following criteria or do not require publicly funded infrastructure improvements; these are reviewed using the staff permit procedure.

a.   Water.  If the following threshold is exceeded, the use shall be reviewed as a Level II: 

(1)   Peak demand total of 100 GPM (gallons per minute); or

(2)   100,000 GPD (gallons per day).

(The above figures are not to be used for fire protection flow rates.)

b.   Wastewater.  If any of the following thresholds are exceeded, the use shall be reviewed as a Level II: 

(1)   Per requirements of the Unified Government of Athens-Clarke County Sewer Use Ordinance; or

(2)   Demand exceeding 100,000 GPD (gallons per day).

c.   Traffic.  If the following are exceeded, the proposed use, within this category, must be reviewed as Level II: 

(1)   Site allocation, as denoted on the traffic volume inventory located in the Athens-Clarke County Planning Department. All allocations are based on roadway capacity at level of service "D" for the road or street;or, lacking any site specific information, the following standards will be used:

(2)   1,000 peak hour trip ends; or

(3)   8,000 average weekday trip ends; or

(4)   Truck traffic comprising more than two percent of the site generated average weekday trip ends. Traffic generation rates will be based on theInstitute of Traffic Engineers Trip Generation Manual  (current edition). 

d.   Stormwater.  If stormwater runoff exceeds thresholds established by Athens-Clarke County stormwater management policies, the use shall be reviewed as Level II. 

2.   Level II. All uses that exceed one of the locally specified criteria (water, wastewater, traffic, and stormwater) or that require locally funded infrastructure improvements. Level II uses shall be reviewed as a Type II procedure based on one of the following:

a.   Review by staff to determine if proposed use is within capacity ranges and does not necessitate additional governmental expenditure or use reserve capacity; or

b.   Review by staff resulting in a determination that the proposed use does exceed capacities or use reserves and is forwarded to government officials for decision and an agreed upon financing plan between the government and the petitioner.

D.   Design standards.  Developments of community significance shall comply with the applicable commercial design standards outlined in chapter 9-25. 

(Ord. of 12-5-2000, § 1)