Pasco City Council OKs changing zoning code for Goodwill

Goodwill of the Columbia appears to have reached a compromise with Pasco that will allow the nonprofit to move forward with its plans to open a thrift store in the old K-Mart building on Court Street.

The city council Monday heard from Rick White, the city's community and economic development director, that Goodwill has opted to apply to rezone the property so it can get a special permit to operate a thrift store there.

Goodwill has been in talks to purchase the old K-Mart but ran into a zoning snag when officials realized the "Commercial Regional" or CR zoning doesn't allow thrift stores at all.

Second-hand stores are prohibited in zones designated for offices, business parks, C1 and C2 commercial zones and commercial regional zones, and the old K-Mart is in one of the city's few commercial regional zones.

The city had the Pasco Planning Commission take a look at those zones, and the commission recommended allowing second-hand stores by special permit in C1 and C2 zones, but not in CR zones.

The council July 16 couldn't agree on whether to go against the planning commission and change the code for CR zones, too, and sent the second-hand store question back to the planning commission for another look.

In the meantime, Goodwill decided to ask the city to rezone the property as C1, White said.

The council voted 6-0 Monday to approve the planning commission's recommendation and change the zoning code to allow thrift stores by special permit in C1 and C2 zones. Councilman Mike Garrison was absent.

White said his staff is working with Goodwill to get the rezone processed.

Also Monday, the council:

-- Voted to start condemnation proceedings against a strip of land on Lewis Street that is needed to build the new overpass. The land is adjacent to the Econo Mart owned by Amrik S. and S.K. Sihota, who have not responded to requests from the city about buying the land, City Manager Gary Crutchfield said.

Once the city files with the courts and a notice of condemnation is delivered to the owner of the land, the city can establish a value and make an offer. If it is not accepted, a trial would take place to set a fair market price for the land.

"Hopefully, the owner will come forward before we get to the courthouse steps," Crutchfield said.

-- Approved a six-year capital improvement plan;

-- Awarded a $652,000 contract to Inland Asphalt Co. for the Kurtzman Park Area 3 Local Improvement District project and a $77,000 contract to HDJ Design Group to design improvements to Powerline Road.

w Rejected bids for construction on Fourth Avenue between Court Street and Interstate 182 and for construction of a water reuse treatment facility because all bids were higher than engineer's estimates and project budgets.

-- Michelle Dupler: 582-1543; mdupler@tricityherald.com