County builders and developers are already looking at ways to utilize the county’s newly approved residential zoning classifications that allows building on 30,000-square-foot lots.

County Commissioners approved the new zoning ordinance allowing RS-30 with a 140-foot frontage at their May 15 meeting upon the recommendation of the City-County Planning Commission.

Chuck Taber, county planning director, said for the past two years several people have asked why they have to rezone to RS-40 (a 40,000-square-foot lot) when they don’t want to mow a full acre.

“They would like to have a smaller lot,” Taber said.

The ordinance permitting RS-30 was approved but not without protests from County Commissioner Mark Helms who said he has enough flooding issues in his district already.

County zoning ordinances already allow frontage on the smaller RS-25 (25,000-square-foot lot) at 125 feet and the frontage on RS-40 at 150 feet wide.

Helm, whose District 2 includes some of the county’s fastest growing areas, said the distance between culverts impacts the county’s ability to maintain the ditches allowing for free drainage.

Helms’ suggested a minimum of 150 feet frontage should be applied across the board to RS-25, RS-30 and RS-40.

Taber said developers would probably not like the narrower lot sizes, a wider frontage would require.

In minutes from the May 15 meeting, Helm said, “I can only speak for my district, but the flooding that I have to deal with in Cedar Bluff, Rockford Place, Timber Gate and all the other additions that have these shorter driveway spaces is killing us as far as what we do with the water.

“If I am going to take care of the roads, I want to ask for a wider frontage,” Helm said.

Commissioner Gerry Payne pointed out that as far as drainage is concerned, the engineer for the development should take care of the drainage problem first.

Helm opposed the approval of RS-30 at 140-feet frontage.

Contact Clarice Doyle,