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Requirements for developers outside Oxford limits less ambiguous

Ten years ago, the city of Oxford established requirements and guidelines for developers outside the city limits who wished to receive water and/or sewer services from the city.

City planners felt it was time to update those requirements.

On Tuesday, the Oxford Board of Aldermen approved a resolution that changes those requirements for developers to keep in sync with the city’s new Comprehensive Plan and Future Land Use Map.

Before the updated language, the standard for evaluation was only for residential subdivisions and the city has approved water and sewer services in recent years to nonresidential developments.

The city’s new Future Land Use Map shows land use recommendations for the urban growth boundary – parts of Lafayette County close to the city limits that the city would likely consider for annexation eventually.

“Staff believes that the densities and land use envisioned in that map are a better guide for determining the extension of water and sewer,” said City Planner Judy Daniel.

The original requirement allowed four units per acre for residential subdivision.

The language has been changed to say that developers will be “allowed to develop in land use types recommended, and to the density recommended for the use in the zoning district that corresponds to the land use recommendation for the property in the Vision 2037 Future Land Use Map Urban Growth Boundary; residential property outside the Urban Growth Boundary will be allowed to develop at up to four units per acre; and non-residential property will be considered in regard to the appropriateness of the proposed use to the rural location and the capacity of city utilities at the proposed location.”

“We don’t have to give water and sewer to anyone … but we do it on a contractual basis,” said City Attorney Pope Mallette on Tuesday. “If you’re going to ask for our water and sewer you’re going to have to be in compliance with our standards and what you’d expect the zoning is in that area. We’re now in a better position to say that because we have a future land use map that shows what we think our future zoning will be.”