Highland News Leader

Highland City Council approves two rezoning changes

The Highland City Council on Monday approved two rezoning requests that will allow single-family properties to become industrial.

There are currently no development plans in place for the properties, one of which is located at 850 Hemlock St. and the other at 12291 U.S. Highway 40, Highland City Manager Mark Latham said.

But the city, which owns the property located at 850 Hemlock, has a long-term plan of putting an electric substation on the site, he said.

The city purchased the property to complete the upgrade of the U.S. Highway 40 and Hemlock Street intersection improvement several years ago.

When the property was annexed into the city several months ago, it came in the city as “R1C” (single-family residential), the most restrictive zoning classification, which is inconsistent with the existing use, Kevin Limestall, Highland’s chief building and zoning official, stated in a March 11 memo to Latham.

“Therefore, a request is being made to amend the zoning to ‘I’ Industrial zoning,” Limestall’s memo stated. “This use falls within the guidelines of the City’s Comprehensive Plan, as the use will remain the same.”

Hemlock is located adjacent to the park and ride lot owned by Madison County Transit, located at 12291 U.S. Highway 40, and other city-owned property.

Madison County earlier purchased 12291 U.S. Highway 40 as part of its master plan for providing transportation to Highland and the surrounding area. Like the Hemlock site, when this property was annexed into the city, it came in the City as R1C, which was inconsistent with the existing use, Limestall said.

Both zoning changes were unanimously approved by the city’s Combined Planning and Zoning Board earlier this month.

In other news:

• The Highland City Council appointed Timothy Weiss to the Planning and Zoning Board. Weiss will replace Leo Painter, whose current term will expire on Aug. 31. Painter is no longer able to attend meetings due to his ongoing health problems.

• The City Council entered into a preliminary engineering service’s agreement with

Hurst-Rosche Engineers Inc.

Hurst-Rosche recently worked with Water Treatment Supervisor Mike Buss and Joe Gillespie, director of Public Works, to determine the best solution for providing additional clarification at the water treatment plant.

“We narrowed the options to construction of a new 65-foot diameter up flow clarifier and construction of two clari-cones,” Gillespie said. “We concluded the best option was to construct an upflow clarifier nearly identical to the existing one.”

Hurst-Rosche, will be paid $155,500 by the city, and complete preliminary engineering for structure, Illinois Environmental Protection Agency permitting, construction observation, and additional expenses necessary for materials and soils testing work.