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Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

Tower P&Z greenlights RV park CUP

Jodi Summit
Posted 8/18/21

TOWER- The Tower Planning and Zoning Commission approved a conditional use permit (CUP) for Justin Renner’s RV Park project at a special meeting on Aug. 12. The motion to approve the CUP was …

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Tower P&Z greenlights RV park CUP

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TOWER- The Tower Planning and Zoning Commission approved a conditional use permit (CUP) for Justin Renner’s RV Park project at a special meeting on Aug. 12. The motion to approve the CUP was approved 4-1, with commission member Kevin Norby voting no.
The CUP, along with a list of ten conditions, and findings of fact that support the decision, has been forwarded to the Tower City Council for final review and approval. The CUP is expected to be on the council’s Aug. 23 meeting agenda.
Renner’s proposal to develop a 49-unit RV park on a 58-acre parcel on Pike Bay, adjacent to the Your Boat Club property, elicited some concerns from property owners on Mill Point at the public hearing on Aug. 3, especially related to noise and screening.
Tony Jeffries, who works on planning and zoning issues with the city, suggested that the conditions put on the permit be “broad and vague.” But he said the commission should look at developing a RV Camp Ordinance and state that the RV park must comply with it. The ordinance, he noted, would also apply to any other RV parks and campgrounds in the city, including the Dave Rose property and the Hoodoo Point Campground.
“This will level the playing field,” he said. Jeffries had samples of ordinances developed by other cities for the commission to review at a future meeting.
Jeffries reviewed the draft conditions and findings of fact assembled by commission member Marshall Helmberger and discussed which should go into the CUP as conditions and what should be incorporated into a future RV ordinance.
The final conditions put on the CUP include:
 Completion of an Environmental Assessment Worksheet (EAW) and compliance with all recommended mitigations identified in the EAW.
 Following all applicable drinking water and wastewater standards.
 That any docking extending into public waters shall comply with state and federal regulations.
 That quiet time be no later than 10 p.m.
 That lighting be directed downwards in compliance with night sky standards.
 The applicant must comply with all other relevant local, county, state, and federal ordinances and regulations.
 That the access road be improved to ensure safe access by emergency vehicles.
 That existing screening on the lakeshore be maintained or enhanced.
 A copy of the campground rules be provided to the city.
The findings of fact, which is also part of the CUP approval process, find that the facility is consistent with current zoning regulations and will not be a danger to the surrounding environment. The findings also state that this development is consistent with the 2015 Tower-Breitung Comprehensive Plan. The findings also note that the demand for RV camping is well-documented in the area and this development enhances and is compatible with the harbor area and the existing development at the Your Boat Club Marina.
Whether or not the city will be able to provide sewer access at the site is uncertain. Quotes received by the city to extend the city’s current sewer line came in much higher than expected. Renner has also been working with an engineering firm to design an on-site sewage system if needed.

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