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Cookeville Planning Approves Medical Zoning Change

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Cookeville Planning Approves Medical Zoning Change

The Cookeville Planning Commission voted to create a new category of medical facilities in the city’s zoning code Monday night.

Community Development Director Jon Ward said regional medical services would include non-institutional facilities that serve more than 150 patients with various outpatient services, as well as any service that requires a certificate of need from the state to operate.

“This would delete our current provisions for methadone or similar treatment facilities,” Ward said. “And we would establish, as a use permitted on appeal in the Medical Services (MS) zoning district, regional medical services.”

Ward said the amendment was created because an application for a different amendment to the zoning codes for methadone clinics that was tabled last month claimed that the city’s current medical service codes are in violation of certain federal laws. The new category includes new rules and regulations surrounding such facilities.

The amendment has to be approved by the city council before it would take effect.

Ward said medical facilities under this new category would still need to acquire specific permission to exist in the city under this amendment.

“It’s essentially looking at those higher-impact uses to make them as a, provide a special exception for those to be permitted in the MS zone,” Ward said.

Ward said the conditions that regional medical services will have to meet include proper licensure, an indoor waiting area for patients, a sign stating that loitering is prohibited on the property, and a location on a street of no less then major arterial classification.

Ward said the amendment was reviewed by the city attorney before going to the commission.

In other business, the commission approved two final plats, one for phase I of the Highbury Subdivision with 36 lots, and the other for the Pemberton Subdivision on England Drive with 27 lots. The commission also appointed Vice Chairman Judy Jennings to the Historic Zoning Commission.


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