Commissioners Approve Amendments to  Economic Development Zone Overlay

County Commissioners Approve Amendments to Economic Development Zone Overlay
New regulations encourage economic commercial growth

On January 23, the Elbert County Board of County Commissioners approved amendments to the County land use regulations to implement the Economic Development Zone Overlay District (EDZ). The Economic Development Zone Overlay District is comprised of portions of lands adjacent to travel corridors like US-24, I-70 and CO-86. The approved amendments aim to increase efficiency of development planning for new and expanding commercial businesses in the County and stimulate economic growth.

The amendments “fast track” the process to open a commercial business if the land falls within the predefined corridors. “This amendment does not significantly change the way we allow commercial businesses to operate in the County and does not change where a property owner can put a business,” stated County Manager Sam Albrecht. “Our residents, more often than not, leave the County to shop or obtain services – in addition to commuting to work. Encouraging more commercial development in our community, and expediting the application process, is good for job creation and will provide more opportunities for residents to shop locally.”

With this incentive, the County hopes to “spur economic activity in these areas,” according to County Commissioner Chris Richardson. “One of the common concerns we have heard is the cost – both time and expense – to starting new businesses in the County. The EDZ is a tool property owners can use to help expedite establishing new businesses in Elbert County.”

Positive fiscal impacts are anticipated, though specific benefits won’t be known until property owners begin taking advantage of the EDZ processes. When proposing the amendments, staff worked closely with municipalities and other local government agencies to inform their decisions, alleviate initial concerns and ensure they were acting in the best interest of County residents and towns.

To learn more about the amendments, review Section IX, EDZ Overlay of the County Zoning Regulations online at: https://tinyurl.com/yxlxklmd