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LSL may allow storage facility in ‘high technology corridor’

The city of Lake Saint Louis will allow the submission of a site plan and a request for a conditional use permit for a new storage facility along Technology Drive not far from a storage facility in the unincorporated area that city officials opposed last year.

Mayor Kathy Schweikert pointed this out before aldermen approved a resolution at their June 19 meeting that will allow a “use determination” that could be a first step toward the Board of Aldermen deciding the fate of the storage location at 319 Commercial Drive.

Schweikert and the city’s planning and zoning commission had recommended against the resolution to allow Brian Wofford, chief operating manager at Storage Masters, to bring the storage facility, to be built on six acres, before the city for review.

City officials said property uses not listed under the present zoning classification can be reviewed and approved for a different use by aldermen on a case-by-case basis. The resolution allows a site plan for the property and a special use permit to be reviewed by planning and zoning, with their recommendation sent on the board.

Schweikert said she was not saying it wouldn’t be a nice storage facility but it may be more appropriate for a light industrial location. Other aldermen, particularly Alderman John Pellerito [Ward 3] and Alderman Gary Turner [Ward 1], discussed details of the proposed facility with Wofford.

Schweikert said last year the board approved a resolution and filed a remonstrance opposing a rezoning application against a U-Haul self-storage and rental facility on a 3.6-acre site in a nearby unincorporated area. The remonstrance required at least five of the St. Charles County Council’s seven members to vote in favor to approve it. The council voted 6-1 in favor last May.

In a letter to the county, Lake Saint Louis City Administrator Paul Markworth said the I-64 corridor in this area has been designated as a high technology corridor by the county since the 1990s.

Schweikert said she couldn’t understand why the same board members sounded like they’re in favor of the new storage facility when they were not in favor of U-Haul last year.

“Maybe I changed my mind,” Turner said. Pellerito said the board may have to be a little more flexible about the use of the property, whose prospects for development may have changed, and that the proposal may need to go back to planning and zoning for review.

The resolution passed with four votes in favor and one abstention.  Alderman Gary Torlina [Ward 3] abstained and Alderman Karen Vennard [Ward 2] was absent.

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