HUBER HEIGHTS — Huber Heights City Council tied the knot on a new wedding venue site Monday night – but not without some misgivings on the part of some council members.
Council voted 5-3 to approve rezoning of a property at 4250 Fishburg Road at the corner of Endicott Road. The rezoning will allow the construction of a wedding and event venue at the location.
Owners Michael and Marsha Griesmeyer asked for a rezoning from Agriculture to Planned Public and Private Buildings. The city’s planning commission approved the request, but the proposal ran into opposition from neighbors who cited increased traffic, noise, potential contamination of local wells, alcohol consumption and locating a business in a residential area as reasons the request should be denied.
A number of those neighbors showed up at Monday’s council meeting to listen to council members debate the plan and to attorney David Eubank defend the proposal.
Council Member Tyler Starline said he opposed the plan because he didn’t think it was consistent with the city’s traffic thoroughfare plan.
Council Member Nancy Byrge also spoke against the proposal.
“I’m very concerned about the safety of the water system in that area,” she said. Byrge questioned whether the method of waste treatment planned for the facility is adequate. She said she wanted to see a feasibility study on the project.
Councilman Richard Shaw defended the plan as did Eubank, who answered questions about the waste treatment program by saying there would be a back-up tank to prevent spillage in case of a failure and that there also would be an alarm system.
Eubank told council there were two steps in the process. The first, which council was considering Monday, was the use of the land and proper zoning. The second step, which will include all the specific details of the project and actual construction, also will have to be approved.
Eubank also told council how the Griesmeyers had cleaned up the property, removing trailers, propane tanks, gasoline, car batteries, tires and other dangerous materials.
“The Griesmeyers in good faith bought this property, they came to the city in good faith, they cleaned it up,” Eubank said. “In good faith, they have followed the system that the city has, the process for new development. They have submitted their application in full. They went through the planning commission. The Griesmeyers ask that you please render a decision in good faith for them.”
When the vote was taken, Byrge and Starline were joined by Janell Smith in voting no. Shaw, Judy Blankenship, Ed Lyons, Mark Campbell and Glenn Otto voted yes.
After the vote, the Griesmeyers said they were relieved the issue had passed.
“We were cautiously optimistic, but things happen,” Marsha Griesmeyer said.
The site will include two pavilions and two accompanying buildings in what the owners describe as a country style. They said if all goes well the facility likely will open sometime in 2019.
Reach Dave Lindeman at (937) 684-8983 or on Twitter @HH_Courier.