JENKS, Okla. — The City of Jenks is rezoning parts of the city, including the downtown and Riverfront areas.
The city council voted six to one Tuesday night to approve the Unified Development Ordinance. Councilor Kaye Lynn was the only one to vote against the ordinance.
The city said the goal of the rezoning ordinance is to keep the historic aspect of downtown and bring in economic development. But some business owners disagree with the changes and feel they limit their opportunities.
The city has been working on the plan for three years. It said it’s to help keep up with the fast-growing community including in the downtown and Riverfront areas.
During Tuesday night’s city council meeting, multiple residents and business owners spoke out against the rezoning ordinance. Many said the city did not give them proper notice of the changes. They also worry the changes could decrease property values and call the new ordinance restrictive.
“My property is being rezoned, it just got rezoned from commercial general, which has a lot of uses in it," said Ronda Bender, Jenks resident and land owner. "According to their new commercial general I believe there are 81 uses and they’re rezoning my property to RTC (Riverfront Tourist Commercial District ) and I believe I have 46 or 47 uses now."
Jenks City Planner Marcae Hilton responded to some of those concerns. She said they made many changes to the original plans such as no longer only allowing retail on the bottom space of buildings. She also said they sent notices to those in the downtown core and held extra meetings once more citizens became concerned.
During the meeting, Hilton told business owners this rezoning won’t change their businesses for them but changes the opportunity for the next person that comes along.
Some residents who spoke against the ordinance said, if the rezoning was approved, they may consider legal action. So far, it's unclear what that action would be.
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