The Sparks Planning Commission was asked to consider the parking parameters authorized in the City Code, but Senior Planner Tim Thompson said the business park on Dunn Circle has a unique setup in that any business is able to make use of the parking throughout the park and not just the spots in front of a particular business. A representative of Flips Gymnastics also said the facility is not equipped or designed to hold special events that would bring in more people than usual, therefore it would only have its “peak” traffic on weekends which would only potentially occupy about 30 parking spots.
Flips Gymnastics’ ability to receive the Special Use Permit is contingent upon the company removing a railroad spur located on its property. Special Use Permits do not allow recreation facilities to be located anywhere with railway access. However, because Flips Gymnastics will be on its own private property, it is allowed to remove the spur to acquire the Special Use Permit.
The Planning Commission also approved an amendment to the Marina Village Planned Development Handbook and to developer of the Marina Villas, David Dahl. Dahl is responsible for the parking garage currently located in Marina Village and Dahl asked for an amendment to the development handbook, allowing “flexibility” in the amount of residential, non-residential, office and commercial space that is allowed on the property.
The Marina Villas are located between the Sparks Marina Lake and Harbour Cove Drive; and Dahl’s request, according to Senior Planner Karen Melby, was to change the total square footage to 416,000 with the restriction that the first floor be only commercial and office so an entire building could not be entirely commercial or entirely office. Dahl’s original plans were to build condominiums above a ground floor of non-residential occupancy including restaurant, office or other commercial space. Dahl said Thursday the plans are now in the works.
“The main purpose of the handbook is to allow us to build apartments around the building,” Dahl said. “The original handbook says we can build condominiums and not apartments, and it says ‘shall’ not ‘may.’
“That site is very special and we think we will be using the existing parking garage, but we are looking at a lot of different options. We are looking at a blank canvas and planning to bring it back to you to see what you think.”
The commission brought up the possibility of demolishing the existing parking garage at the marina and Dahl did not rule out the option. He did say his team would be doing a cost study for demolition. He added, however, that he does not feel the option would be “feasible” cost wise, still stressing it would not stop his team from evaluating the option.
The Planning Commission also reviewed a written comment from a resident on Harbour Cove Drive, University of Nevada Political Science Professor Paul Davis, who voiced strong support for the amendment approval. Davis said the flexibility in the number of residential and commercial spaces at the Marina Village would bring more success to the area.
“The ability to allow greater flexibility in development is essential for the long-term success of the area surrounding the Marina,” Davis wrote. “It is important to not be unduly locked in of projects that need to change due to various changing circumstances. Hopefully, this amendment will continue to vitalize economic development further in Sparks and make Sparks and the Legends a true tourist attraction.”