North Bend City Council votes against proposed zoning change to allow event venues in some residential areas
April 6, 2011
By Dan Catchpole
North Bend City Council voted 1-5 against a proposed change to the city’s zoning code to allow a venue for weddings and other events to be built near downtown.
The proposal would have allowed event venues to be built on parcels zoned as cottage residential, a designation created in 2006 to encourage more affordable housing near downtown.
Several City Council members said the zoning had not had time to be effective. The city had a self-imposed building moratorium until 2009. By the time the ban was lifted, the housing market had fallen apart, leaving little demand for new homes.
Even so, one area zoned as cottage residential is under development by John Day Homes.
The proposed zoning change had been submitted by Heidi and Paul Moon. The couple runs an event venue in unincorporated King County, which hosts mostly weddings.
Under King County code, the couple can only operate with a six-month temporary permit. So, they want to relocate to a city that would allow for a permanent operation.
The Moons want to take over the lot formerly occupied by Bad Girls Antiques, which closed in 2010. The shop is on land zoned as cottage residential, which allows small commercial operations.
A couple dozen supporters of the proposal turned out at the council meeting. Several said allowing event venues would boost the local economy.
Several homeowners in the neighborhood around Bad Girls Antiques also showed up to oppose the proposal.
City Council members sided with the homeowners.