By Nicole Jones
At a joint meeting between Planning and Zoning Commission and the City Council, city leaders discussed and decided on four requests for conditional use permits.
Known as CUPs, conditional use permits are special requests from property owners or developers to step outside the city’s already established zoning rules.
The Nov. 18 meeting included approval of permits to add height to a building, allow a gas station in a general business zone, a church in a Neighborhood Service District and retail business within a building zoned light industrial.
Through the CUP process, the applicant states his or her case, followed by an opportunity for anyone in the public to speak for or against the request. This is followed by a council discussion and a vote.
There are criteria that must be met in order to be granted the conditional use permit: the proposed project has to follow the city’s future land use plan and be consistent with the zoning district that’s there, should preserve the character of adjacent developments, mitigate any negative impacts and must not generate any hazardous pedestrian or traffic, among them.
Per the council’s decision, Memorial Hermann Health Systems will be adding height to an existing medical office building in Shadow Creek Town Center. The height was an oversight from the original plans, a representative said. Located at 10907 Memorial Hermann Drive, an area zoned as general commercial.
In another request, Lennar Homes requested an SUP to allow a convenience store and gas station at the northwest corner of Cullen Parkway and McHard Road, an area zoned general business.
“It’s enough pumps to serve 20 vehicles; it’s not 20 pumps,” corrected Justin Schrader of LJA Engineering, representing the applicant.
The city several years ago applied conditional use permit requirements for gas stations locating in general business zones.
“On Pearland Parkway, we had them literally sharing driveways,” Councilman Tony Carbone said. “I think there’s a need there especially when McHard opens up. If there are no developments people won’t be able to run their errands and get things done.”
The council voted 6-0 to approve the conditional use permit.
A third request came from Fellowship of Believers Baptist Church, which wants to build a church at 2834 Wagon Trail Road, a three-acre site in Figland Orchard Subdivision zoned as Neighborhood Service District.
The request was approved unanimously.
“If the lord wants another church in Pearland, I’ll never stand against it,” Councilman Woody Owens said.
A fourth permit granted by the council will allow a 5,000-square-foot retail business in an existing larger building at 1118 Main St., an area that is zoned light industrial. The retailer will sell general merchandise and home goods.
The proposed use was not consistent with the future land use plan, but fit in with the general character of the area, staff said. That permit was also approved unanimously.