DENHAM SPRINGS – The Denham Springs City Council denied a rezoning request Tuesday that would have created a light commercial property surrounded by residential-zoned property.

The council voted 4-0 to reject amending the city zoning ordinance so it could consider rezoning 917 Wanda St. from R-1 Residential to C-1 Light Commercial.

No one spoke in favor of the proposal during a public hearing, while two of eight people who opposed it addressed the council.

Scott Carley, who said he lived at the corner of Wanda Avenue and Hazelnut Streets, said the neighborhood – between Range Avenue and Florida Avenue Southwest -- is “coming back to life slowly,” since the 2016 flood.

“Kids are starting to ride their bikes and people are starting to walk again,” Carley said. “I don’t feel a parking lot is a good idea. We had traffic problems before the flood.”

Patricia Tullis, who said she lived on Chestnut Street next to the lot, questioned what would happen in the future if the lot were sold to another business.

“Once it’s commercial, it’s commercial,” she said.

Both residents of the neighborhood said there already is a problem with traffic using their streets as a shortcut between Florida Avenue and Range Avenue, speeding and ignoring stop signs.

Planning & Zoning Commission Director Fred Banks told the council that the commission did not recommend the change, since it would create a commercial property in the middle of a residential neighborhood.

After the council voted to close the public hearing, there was no discussion before the vote to deny the request.

In other action, the council:

-- Approved a 5-year lease for $100 with George and Marilyn Driggers for Driggers Park, a 15-foot by 45-foot public rest area in the Antique Village.

--Approved Change Order No. 1 for $2,619.66 to Buffalo Electric, Inc. for the Waste Water Treatment Plant MCC Replacement.

--Approved the fourth and final payment of $9,614.70 to Buffalo Electric, Inc. for the Rushing Road Water Well electrical panel replacement.

--Declared a police unit, a Chevrolet Silverado, as surplus.

--Accepted the Fire Department report for February. Firefighters fought three fires, answered 99 rescue and EMS calls, 13 service calls, and 6 false alarms or calls.

--Accepted the Police Department report for February. Officers made 95 arrests, issued 912 citations, investigated 89 accidents and submitted 540 reports.

--Accepted the Animal Control report for February. A totl of 29 dogs and 34 cats were adopted out, while 47 dogs and 34 cats were taken in.


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