Growth is continuing in Red Bank, and the city is considered to be a “hot market” now, said Red Bank Mayor John Roberts. Three acres at 3715 Dayton Blvd. that now have restricted use are seen as a key factor for future development. That property is part of the land that the city acquired when Red Band did a land swap with Hamilton County Schools. Red Bank acquired the property on Dayton Boulevard where the old middle school was located in return for the property where the new middle school was built.
Money from the U.S. Department of the Interior was used by the city originally to buy the land where the school now sits, and it came with the condition that three acres would be used for recreational purposes. That condition moved to the property on Dayton Boulevard when the land swap took place.
Mayor Roberts is trying to get the requirement tied to those three acres removed in order to free up the land for other uses. He is also working to get ideas for the best use of the entire property that is located in the Red Bank town center.
The city has a number of projects underway, said City Manager Randall Smith. Tuesday night the commission voted to use Wiser Consultants, LLC for engineering work that is needed for three of the projects that are expected to be done this summer. Authorization was given for engineering repairs of a box culvert at the intersection of Ashland Terrace and Dayton Boulevard in an amount not to exceed $61,600. An amount not to exceed $43,582, was approved for engineering repairs of the collapsing stream banks of Stringer’s Branch at Fair Street. Wiser will also do a survey of city owned property to make sure it is all ADA compliant, for an amount not to exceed $18,150.
Red Bank has received a 2018 Homeland Security grant for $14,000 that requires no match from the city. It will be used to purchase radios for the fire department.
Properties located at 12, 16, 300 and 306 Ashland Terrace has had continual commercial use. When a new zoning map was created in 2016, these lots were inadvertently given a residential zoning designation. A public hearing was held Tuesday night to change the zoning back to C-2 Commercial and no resident spoke either for or against the proposal. The council voted unanimously for the zoning of these properties to revert to their original C-2.
Houses at 109 and 111California Ave. were both condemned because they have been judged to be past the state where repairs could bring them into compliance with city codes. With agreement from the owners, the city will demolish the buildings and put a lien on the properties.
Money from the Drug Fund’s operating budget will be used to buy one new vehicle for the police department and for dispatching software. Police will now be dispatched by a computer.
On second and final vote, an ordinance was amended that will regulate parking of vehicles and equipment on streets and right-of-ways within Red Bank. City Manager Smith said that on-street parking is a major complaint that he gets calls about. With roadways of various widths, one large vehicle can block a narrow street, he said. The intent of the new ordinance is to have clear passage on the roads and for emergency vehicles to be able to get through. To help enforce this ordinance, a penalty phase for parking violations was also passed that will increase fines.
There is also a goal to stop or reduce the incidence of false alarms going to the police department that require a response. The city manager said many calls originate from the same numbers repeatedly. Most are caused by accidentally touching a panic button or from using a wrong code, however, police must respond to every alarm. The new ordinance that passed Tuesday night will allow one false alarm before fines are given.
Final approval was given for an amendment to the zoning ordinance that establishes the minimum square footage for new construction. In R-1 zones, there is the minimum of 1,400 square feet of heated living area, and new construction in R-1A zones will be required to have a minimum of 2,000 square feet of heated living space.
Money from the sale of the old Red Bank Hospital has been put into the Red Bank and Soddy Daisy Charitable Foundation, and each year interest earned has been divided equally between the two cities. This year $23,200 received by Red Bank has been designated for buying Christmas decorations for the central business district. They will replace decorations that were lost several years ago when vandals set a fire at White Oak Park.