Board of Supervisors Meeting Date:


Planning Commission


June 9, 2005

Staff Lead:



W. Todd Benson, Assistant Zoning Administrator


Community Development



A Zoning Ordinance Text Amendment to Section 3-315 to Create a New Classification for Wholesale Trade Establishment with Associated Retail Sales Larger than 50,000 Square Feet and Allow Them Only by Special Exception in the C-2 and I-1 Districts, and to Section 3-312, Subsections 4 and 5, to Allow Retail Sales in Buildings Larger than 50,000 Square Feet Only by Special Exception in the C-2 and C-3 Districts


Topic Description:


The amendment would ensure that “big box” stores can only be approved by special exception.


Requested Action of the Board of Supervisors:


Conduct a public hearing and consider adoption of the attached Ordinance.


Financial Impact Analysis:

No financial impact analysis has been conducted.


Summary Staff Report:


Staff believes that stores such as Cosco and Sam’s Clubs are retail.  However, there is a possibility that a court would consider them as wholesale stores with associated retail. Certainly, such stores market themselves as wholesale stores. At present, wholesale with associated retail is permitted by right in I-1 Districts and allowed by Special Permit in the C-2 Districts.  It is not the name given to these stores that is significant from a land use stand point, but their impact on traditional zoning matters and concerns; whether they are properly classified as retail or wholesale, their impact is the same. This amendment would require all wholesale stores with associated retail, as well as retail stores, greater than 50,000 square feet, to be permitted only by special exception.  In this way, consistency of review and consistency of standards will be fostered.  Moreover, the chance of a big box store appearing “by right” will be eliminated.


On April 26, 2005, the Planning Commission held a public hearing on the proposed amendment and unanimously recommended it for adoption by the Board of Supervisors.

Identify any other Departments, Organizations or Individuals that would be affected by this request:

Department of Economic Development



Proposed Text Amendment